Skip to main content

Full text of "Napoleon in exile: Elba; from the entry of the allies into Paris on the 31st March 1814 to the return of Napoleon from Elba and his landing at Golfe Jouan on the 1st March 1815"

See other formats





Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

University of Toronto 






Author of " Napoleon in Exile : Elba," etc. 


Author of " Napoleon in Caricature," etc. 

With two coloured frontispieces and one hundred iUus- 
trations from the collection of A, M. Broadley 

In two volumes, Demy Svo, cloth gilt, 32/- net 

T^HIS valuable work carries on the story of Napoleon 
in Exile, by a remarkably thorough account of his 
life on the island of St. Helena after his defeat at 
Waterloo, June 18th, 1815. 










:: :: author of "napoleon in caricature/' etc. :: :: 



First Published in Igj^ 



THE Elban episode in Napoleon's career has not 
received the attention it deserves. It reveals to us 
the man unencumbered by the weight of the 
Empire, and not yet given up to the pose for pos- 
terity ; and it helps us to understand the course of events 
at St. Helena. 

Elba explains St. Helena. For that reason the two 
subjects are included in one work, under the title of 
" Napoleon in Exile." The first volume, dealing with Elba, 
is published on the 31st March, 1914, exactly one hundred 
years after the entry of the Allies into Paris. Two volumes 
dealing with St. Helena it is hoped to publish on the 1st 
March, 1915, the centenary of the landing of Napoleon on 
the coast of France on his return from Elba. 

It has been my privilege to be given free use of the un- 
published Elba material, including a large number of letters 
signed or initialed by Napoleon, collected by the late Earl 
of Crawford. I have also to thank Professor Vigo, Curator 
of the archives of the city of Leghorn, Mr. Montgomery 
Carmichael, British Consul at Leghorn, Mr. J. C. Airey, 
British Vice-Consul at Portoferraio, and Signer Pilade del 
Buono, formerly proprietor of the San Martino estate, for 
valuable assistance given me in various ways during my 
visits to Leghorn and Elba. 


To Mr. A. M. Broadley I am under a special debt of 
obligation for the free access accorded me to his valuable 
Napoleonic Library and collection of MSS., as well as for the 
illustrations which he has furnished from his extensive col- 
lection of prints and caricatures. Mr. Broadley has also 
contributed a chapter dealing specially with the iconography 
of Elba and other sidelights connected with the subject. 

I have to thank Major-General Turletti, Commander at 
Leghorn, for his great courtesy in having a copy made for me 
of the plan of the Mulini Palace, kept in the archives of the 
Engineers at Leghorn. Signor Alberto Reiter, of Porto - 
ferraio, made the long expedition to the Madone, in order 
to obtain for me the photographs here reproduced, for which 
I thank him most heartily. Professor Karl Schmidt, of 
Odense, Denmark, has most kindly allowed me to reproduce 
from the copy in his possession, the print of the landing of 
Napoleon at Elba, from the drawing by Lieutenant Sidney 
Smith, of the Undaunted. I have also to thank Dr. J. F. Silk 
for giving me permission to copy the drawing of San Martino. 

31s/ March, 1914. 




I. The Allies enter Paris 

II. The Abdications ..... 

III. The Treaty of Fontaikebleau 

IV. The Journey to the Coast . 
V. The First Voyage on a British Warship 

VI. The New Kingdom .... 

VII. The Reception at Portoferraio . 

VIII. The Palace and Court 

IX. A Deserted Island .... 

X. The Arrival of the Guard . 

XI. The Festivals of San Cristino, St. George 
and Saint Napoleon 

XII. Villegiatura ..... 

XIII. The Fortress Estate .... 

XIV. Finance ...... 

XV. Marie Louise ..... 

XVI. The Man at Elba .... 

XVII. The Elban Message .... 

XVIII. The Congress of Vienna 

XIX. The Fatal Decision .... 

XX. Back to France ..... 

XXI. Iconography and other Sidelights 

Bibliography ..... 

Index ,,...,, 












Napoleon at Elba, with PoRTOFERnAio in the Background 

From a contemporary engraviug in tlie collection of Mr. Alfred Brewis. 

Frontispiece in Photogravure 


Entry of the Allied Sovereigns into Paris, 31 March, 1814 . 24 
The Empress Marie Louise and the King of Rome . . 32 

From a contemporary engraving. 

George Cruikshank's Caricature of "The Elbaronian 
Emperor going to Take Possession of his New 
Territory " . . . . . . . 40 

Published 23 April, 1814. 

The Farewell .\t Fontainebleau, 20 April, 1814 . . 48 

From a contemporary print. 

Nic ALIAS Nap's March to Elba . . . . . 5Q 

From George Cniikshaiik's caricature of 1 May, 1S14. 

A contemporary German View of Napoleon's Journey from 

Fontainebleau to the Coast, April, 1814 . . . 60 

Marshal Augereau and Napoleon . . . , 64 

French caricature of a celebrated incident during Napoleon's jouiney from 
Fontainebleau to the coast. 

Napoleon's Embarkation at St. Raphael for Elba . . 72 

From a contemporary German print. 


From a print of 1S14. 

PoRTOFERRAIO . . . . . . . 88 

From a German satirical print of 1814. 



" Nap Dheadino his Doleful Doom, or his Grand Entry 

IN THE Isle of Elba " . . . . . 96 

From an Englitih caricature of April, 1S14. 

Napoleon's Landing in Elba, 4 May, 1814 . . .100 

From a contenii>or,iry German print. 

Napoleon's Arrival in Elba . . . . . 104 

From a French caricature of 1S14. 

The Mulini Palace, Portoferraio, 1914 . . . 108 

Garden of the Mulini Palace, Portoferraio, in 1814 . 112 

From a contemporary print. 

Garden of the Mulini Palace, Portoferraio, 1914 . .116 
Baron Peyrusse . . . . . . . 120 

From a contemporary print. 

Pons de l'Herault . . . . . . 120 

From a contemporary print. 

The Village of Rio, Elba . . . . .124 

From a contemporary print after a sketch by Sir B. C. Hoaro. 

Napoleon and Elba . . . . . . 128 

From an English aquatint of 1814. 

The Fortress of Volterraio, Elba . . . .136 

From a contemporary print after a sketch by Kir R. C. Hoare. 

Cambronne . . . . . . . 144 

From a contemporary portrait. 

Count Jersm.\nowski . . . . . . 144 

From a contemporary portrait. 

An Imperial Review at Elba . . . . . 152 

From a Bourbon caricature of 1814. 

Elba as seen from the Tuscan Coast . . . • l60 

From a contemporary print after a sketch by Sir R. C. Hoare. 



San Martino (Ground Plan) . . . . .164 

Drawn by Norwood Young, 

Contemporary Plan of the San Martino Estate, 1814-15 . 1 68 
Hermitage of La Madonna del Monte . . . .176 

Where Napoleon staypd from 23 August to 14 September, 1814. From a 
pliotoj-Taph by Alberto Reiter, Portofenaio. 

POKTO LoNGONE IN 1814 . . . . . .184 

From a contemporary print after a sketch by Sir R. C. Hoare. 

General View of Portoferraio in 1814 . . .192 

From a contemporary aquatint In the collection of A. M. Broadley. 

Drouot . . . . . . . . 200 

From a contemporary engraving. 

Napoleon in 1814 ...... 208 

From a picture taken (luring bis residence in Elba, which in 1S50 was in the 
possession of Signor Foi'esi, of Portoferraio. 

The Hermitage of Monte Serrato in 1814-15 . .216 

From a contemporary print after a sketch by Sir R. C. Iloare. 

Napoleon's Observatory . . . . . . 224 

Near the Hermitage, from which he used to ga^e on the coast of Corsica. From 
a photograph by Alberto Reiter. 

The Robinson Crusoe of the Island of Elba . . . 232 

From a French caricature of 1S14. 

The Villa San Martino, Elba . .... 240 

From a contemporary drawing in the collection of the Vicomte de Femere. 

Bonaparte at Elba . . . . . . 248 

From a sketch taken by an officer on the spot. In the collection of A. 51. Broadley. 

Napoleon's Study in the Villa San Martino, 1914 . . 256 
The Destiny of France . . . . . . 272 

a French caricature of 1S14-1J. 

The Indigestible Pie . . . . . . 2«0 

From a French caricature of ISIJ. 



Sir Neil Campbell ...••• 288 

From a portrait in possession of General Sir H. Grant, k.c.b., o.c.v.o. 

The Ghost ...••'• ~"" 

A contemporary French caricature of 1S15. 

Contemporary English Caricature of Napoleon's Return 

FROM Elba to France, February-March, 1815 . . 304 

Embarkation of Napoleon at Portoferraio for France, 

26 February, 1815 . . . • . . 308 

Napoleon's Elban Standard . .... 312 

From an English engraving of August, 1823. 

Disembarkation of Napoleon in France on the Shore of 

GoLFE Jouan, 1 March, 1815 . • . .316 

The Grenadier of Elba . . • ' * ^^^ 

From a contemporary print. 

Bloody Boney the Carcass But<her left off Trade and 

Retiring to Scarecrow Island (Elba) . • . 324 

An English caricature of 12 April, 1814. 

George Cruikshank's Title-page to an English Satirical 

Song of 1814 on Napoleon's Exile to Elba . . 328 

The Congress Dissolved before the Cake was Cut Up . 332 

From George Cruikshank's caricature of 6 April, 1815. 





ON the 31st March, 1814— just a hundred years ago 
—the troops of the AlHes, Russia, Austria, and 
Prussia, marched in triumph into Paris, the chief 
city of the Continent, and the capital of the man 
who till then had been the greatest Monarch in the civilised 

The great procession was headed by a band of trumpeters 
on horseback, who passed through the barriere de Pantin at 
11 a.m., followed by the red Cossacks of the Czar's Guard, 
fifteen abreast. After them came the cuirassiers and hussars 
of the Prussian Royal Guard, and the dragoons and hussars 
of the Russian Imperial Guard. Then appeared the Czar 
Alexander himself, with the King of Prussia on his left, and 
Prince Schwartzenberg, representing Austria, on his right. 
The Emperor Francis had preferred not to take personal 
part in the celebration of the downfall of his son-in-law. 
Then came a varied, brilliant, and numerous Staff, of perhaps 
a thousand mounted officers, representing nearly every 
nation in Europe. Then the infantry, Austrian, Prussian, 
and Russian grenadiers and guards, thirty abreast. Forty- 


seven squadrons of Russian cuirassiers brought up the rear. 
So they passed through the faubourg Saint-Martin and the 
Boulevard des ItaHens to the Champs filysees, where a large 
camp was formed. 

The Czar was riding a beautiful dappled grey, given him 
by Caulaincourt when Ambassador at St. Petersburg on 
behalf of Napoleon, at that time in the height of his power. 
His choice of that horse meant that, as man to man, he was 
still a personal friend to Napoleon ; but the spectacular 
march into Paris was his reply to the Emperor's entry into 

The Parisians were pleased with the Czar's handsome and 
gracious presence, and they received him cordially. They 
had supposed that all foreign soldiers were ferocious bar- 
barians, and had expected rapine and murder, until the 
Czar's declaration that he took Paris under his protection 
became known. 

The greater part of the armies of Bliicher and Schwartzen- 
berg remained outside Paris, taking up positions towards 
Fontainebleau. The troops which entered the city were 
selected corps of fine men, taller than the French were 
accustomed to behold, in brilliant uniforms. The Parisians 
were impressed by their stature and magnificence, and 
astonished at their mild manners. Alexander was showing 
the world how a conquered city should be treated. He said 
he hoped that he had no enemy in Paris, and only one in 
France. The Bank of France, the museums and public 
monuments, were placed under the protection of Guards ; 
no soldiers were quartered upon French citizens ; there was 
no disarming of the National Guard, or of the gendarmes. 
Civilisation, so roughly battered by Napoleon, whose treat- 
ment of a conquered city was habitually barbarous, reap- 
peared in the example of the Czar. 

Where, in the meantime, was the Emperor of the French, 
and what had become of the Empress Marie Louise, whom 
he had left as Regent in Paris ? 


Before leaving for the army to make his last desperate 
effort to drive back the approaching forces of Europe, on the 
23rd January, 1814, Napoleon held a great reception of 
officers of the National Guard at the Tuileries. He presented 
to them the Empress Marie Louise and the infant King of 
Rome, not yet three 3'ears of ago. With that dignity and 
dramatic instinct which he could always command on such 
occasions. Napoleon took Marie Louise by one hand and his 
son by the other, and advanced towards the assembled 
officers. " Gentlemen," he said, " I am about to place myself 
at the head of my army, and I hope to push back the enemy 
across the frontier. But if the enemy should approach the 
Capital, I confide to the courage of the National Guard the 
Empress and the King of Rome — my wife and my son." 
Although among the officers present there were a number 
who were not well disposed to the Imperial Government, all 
were touched, many shed tears, and cries of '"''Vive VEmpereur " 
resounded on every side. Two days later, on the 25th 
January, 1814, at an early hour, Napoleon left Paris for the 
army. He never again saw either his wife or his son. 

In the campaign of 1814 Napoleon showed all his old daring 
and energy. He had two enemies, Bl cher and Schwartzen- 
berg, and he rushed from one to the other, beating each back 
in turn. It was a brilliant exhibition of swiftness and auda- 
city, but it was foredoomed to failure, for each army was 
stronger than his own, and though pushed back a little from 
time to time, the Allies were making steady progress towards 
a junction outside Paris. In the hope of stopping their 
approach, Napoleon at last marched off tov^'ards the Rhine, 
and thus cut their communications, but the Allies merely 
continued to approach upon Paris. 

When he heard of this continued advance Napoleon hurried 
back with all possible speed, at first with an escort of cavalry, 
but as he approached Paris and the news he received was ever 
more and more alarming, he flung himself into a post-chaise, 
and went on at a gallop, with Caulaincourt at his side, 


followed by a second carriage in which were Generals Drouot 
and Flahaut, and a third containing Marshal Lefebvre and the 
orderly officer Colonel Gourgaud. 

It was the 30th March, the day upon which the Allies attacked 
Paris. By 11 p.m. Napoleon had reached the post-station of 
Fromenteau, about twelve miles from Paris. Devoured 
with feverish anxiety, he was marching forward on foot 
while the horses were being changed, when a troop of cavalry 
was encountered. Their chief, Belliard, dismounted, and 
was dragged on by the Emperor, who was still walking 
furiously in the direction of Paris. He assailed Belliard 
with question after question, giving him no time to 
reply : " Where is the army ? Where is the Empress, 
the King of Rome, Joseph ? Who commands at Paris ? " 
On hearing that Paris had capitulated that evening and 
would be entered by the Allies on the following morning, the 
Emperor burst into a torrent of invectives against all con- 
cerned. But he did not cease to march all the while on to 
Paris. " Wherever I am not, nothing but folly is committed. 
Caulaincourt, make the carriage come on, we must go to 
Paris at once." He had by this time walked nearly two 
miles, and had reached a point whence he could see the 
bivouacs of the enemy. There was obvious danger of 
capture. It would have been madness to proceed further. 
He had to stop. Before returning, he sent Flahaut to gallop 
on and retract the capitulation if it was not yet actually 
signed ; and he sent Caulaincourt to the Czar with full 
power to conclude a peace upon any terms. Then he went 
back to the post-inn and sat over his maps. " I have them," 
he exclaimed after a while; "God delivers them into my 
hands. But I must have four days ! " Then, overcome with 
fatigue, he fell into so heavy a sleep that his attendants had 
great difficulty in arousing him to receive the message that 
arrived at dawn, from Caulaincourt. It announced that the 
capitulation had been signed, and the Allies were preparing 
to enter Paris. Soon afterwards came Flahaut with a letter 


from Marmont saying that since the departure of the Era- 
press, the Parisians had been indisposed to make any great 
effort against the invaders. Napoleon retired, in sullen de- 
spair, to Fontainebleau. 

He had left Marie Louise in Paris as Regent, with a Council, 
of whom the most important members were his brother 
Joseph, Lieut.-General of the Emperor, with Camba ceres, 
Clarke, Montalivet, Savary, and Talleyrand. On the 28th 
March it was known that the Allies would be before Paris 
in two days. No news had been received from Napoleon for 
five days, from which it w^as concluded that the enemy 
stood between him and Paris. What was to be done with the 
Empress and the King of Rome ? 

At 8.30 p.m. the Council of the Regency assembled, under 
the presidency of the Empress herself, to decide whether she 
should remain in Paris. With the exception of Joseph, who 
did not vote, and Clarke, who was in Joseph's confidence, 
the Council was unanimous in the opinion that the Empress 
should remain, for they all saw that if she went the Parisians 
would consider they had been deserted in the face of the 
enemy, and would, in their turn, abandon the Imperial cause. 

Joseph, however, now produced and read out a letter 
that Napoleon had written him on the 16th March ^ :— 

" Rheims, IGth March, 1814. 
" My brother, in conformity with the verbal instructions 
that I have given you and with the spirit of all my letters, 
you must not allow that, in any event, the Empress and the 
King of Rome fall into the hands of the enemy. I am about 
to make a manoeuvre which may possibly leave you for some 
days without news of me. If the enemy should advance 
upon Paris in such force that all resistance should become 
impossible, send off in the direction of the Loire, the Regent, 
my son, the grand dignitaries, the ministers, the officials of 
the Senate, the presidents of the Council of State, the grand 

* Correspoudancej No. 21497- 


officers of the Crown, the Baron de la Bouillerie, and the 
treasure. Do not leave my son, and remember that I would 
prefer to know he was in the Seine rather than in the 
hands of the enemies of France. The fate of Astyanax, 
prisoner of the Greeks, has always seemed to me the most 
unhappy in all history. 

" Napoleon." 

In a previous letter, of the 8th February, which Joseph did 
not think it necessary to show to the Council, Napoleon had 
said : "If Talleyrand counts for anything in this proposal 
to leave the Empress in Paris in the event of our force 
evacuating it, that is a treason which is being plotted. . . . 
If you hear of a lost battle and have news of my death, you 
will have the information before my ministers. Send off the 
Empress and the King of Rome to Rambouillet ; give orders 
to the Senate, to the Council of State, and to all the troops to 
unite upon the Loire ; leave at Paris either the Prefect or 
an Imperial Commissary, or a Mayor. I should prefer that 
they should kill my son, rather than see him brought up at 
Vienna as an Austrian Prince, and I have a good enough 
oi^inion of the Empress to be persuaded that she is also of 
the same opinion, so far as a woman and a mother can be. 
I have never seen Andromache represented without pitying 
the fate of Astyanax surviving his house, and that I have not 
considered it a happiness for him not to have survived his 

The letter of the 16th March, with its explicit command 
and its reference to previous instructions in the same sense, 
seemed to the Covmcil to leave them no alternative. Against 
their own inclinations and fearful of the effect upon opinion 
in Paris, they felt compelled to decide that the Empress and 
her son should leave Paris on the following morning, for 

When the Council broke up at 2 a.m., the members, 
' Correspoudance^ No. 21210. 


walking out together through the corridors of the Tuileries 
Palace, expressed to each other their dismay at what they 
had been obliged to do ; and on parting they bade adieu 
one to another, in the tone of men saying farewell to the 
Government they represented. Talleyrand, going out with 
Savary, said to him : " Well, that is the end of it all ; is not 
that also your opinion ? Upon my word, here is a fine game 
lost. And what a fall in the view of history ! To give one s 
name to adventures instead of giving it to an epoch ! When 
I think of that, I cannot prevent myself from giving a groan. 
What would the Emperor have said of any other man who 
had allowed himself to be placed in his position ? " 

The departure from Paris of Napoleon's wife and son was 
fatal to the dynasty. It was undertaken at the supposed 
command of Napoleon ; and yet it was not, in the actual 
circumstances, what he had meant or desired. The terms he 
used in the letter read to the Council were, " if the enemy 
should advance upon Paris in such force that all resistance 
should become impossible." Now, resistance was still pos- 
sible • and while it continued there was always the chance 
that Napoleon might be able to come to the rescue. On the 
other hand, without Marie Louise and the King of Rome, no 
spirited defence on behalf of the dynasty would be made. 
The letter of the 8th February says that the Empress is to 
leave Paris " in the event of our forces evacuating it," or 
if news came of a battle lost and the Emperor's death. 
That state of affairs had not been reached. And if the 
Empress left Paris Napoleon's explicit commands were that 
the Council, the Senate, the chief officers of the Government 
were to leave also. Paris was to contain no higher official 
than a Commissarv, Prefect, or Mayor. This was not done, 
the result being that when the Allies entered Pans they 
obtained control of the Government. Joseph did give the 
order, about midday of the 30th March, but it was then too 
late ; and as he himself left Paris immediately, without seeing 
his order carried out, the Capital and the Government, 


abandoned by the Imperial Family, gave themselves up 
without reserve to the invaders. 

This would not have happened if, instead of indulging in 
melodramatic allusions to classical examples — for it was the 
reference to Astyanax that remained in men's minds — 
Napoleon had said merely that the Empress was not to desert 
Paris till the last moment, and then was to take the whole 
Government with her. 

Joseph had for some time past recognised that the Imperial 
cause was lost beyond recovery, owing to the proud and 
obstinate character of his brother. He had already written 
to Napoleon several letters urging the absolute necessity 
of his coming to terms with the enemy. " Good or bad," he 
wrote, " peace is necessary ; in the actual state of affairs 
it would inevitably be a blessing." ..." Peace," he wrote 
once more, " would not be dishonouring to France, as she 
would not have lost any of her ancient territory. As for you, 
Sire, you would become the father of the people if, abandoning 
the theatrical, you were to consent at last to supplant the 
extraordinary man by the great King." This recalls the 
observation of Talleyrand that it was time the Emperor of 
the French became the King of France. Napoleon's reply 
to his brother had been to order a meeting of the Council of 
Regency to consider the terms of peace proposed by the 
Allies. The Council met and decided, without hesitation 
and by a unanimous vote, in favour of accepting the proposals. 

While transmitting this decision to Napoleon, on the 4th 
March, Joseph had written : — 

" The Council Avas united in thinking that the necessity 
of seeing France reduced to the territory she had in 1792 
should be accepted, rather than have the Capital exposed. 
The occupation of the Capital is regarded as the end of the 
present order of things and the beginning of great mis- 
fortunes. An early peace on any terms is indispensable. . . . 
You will remain to France, and France will remain to you 
the same as she was when she astonished Europe. And you 


who saved her once, will save her a second time by signing 
a peace to-day, and saving yourself with her. . . . Whether 
your Majesty has obtained a victory to-day or not, it is 
equally necessary to think of peace, that is the sum of what 
everybody is thinking and saying here." 

Napoleon's reply to this was just what Joseph had expected 
and feared. It was the mendacious bulletin exaggerating 
his success at the battle of Craonne. 

Joseph had described his brother at the age of seventeen 
as " an inhabitant of an ideal world," and can have had no 
illusions as to the ruin that was impending, or its cause ; 
especially when Napoleon wrote that if an address in favour 
of peace were sent to him, as had been proposed, he would 
treat it as a rebellion, and cause to be arrested Joseph and 
the ministers, and the other chief signatories. 

At that time there existed a very general feeling through- 
out France, and to some extent also in the ranks of the Allies, 
that Napoleon was unconquerable, that his genius was equal 
to any task, however seemingly impossible. This idea had 
taken possession of Napoleon himself, who added to it a 
superstitious belief in fate, and particularly in his own star. 
During these last days, when it had at last become plain 
even to the most credulous that the end was near, Napoleon 
still assumed, as a fact beyond discussion, that it was 
ordained by fate that he should emerge triumphant. He 
never faced the situation ; it never occurred to him that his 
career could really be ended ; he supposed that no combina- 
tion of powers could possibly produce such a result, the mere 
thought of which was an impiety. The general vulgar belief 
that he was a god, an instrument of destiny, had entered 
into his own brain. 



HAVING held a grand review of the AlHcd troops 
in the Champs filysces, Alexander retired to the 
house of Talleyrand, where a consultation was 
held, at which the chief personages present were 
the Czar, the King of Prussia, Prince Schwartzenberg, and 

The Czar began by observing that there were three alter- 
natives : to make peace with Napoleon ; to establish the 
Empress Marie Louise as Regent ; to recall the Bourbons. 
Talleyrand then spoke, and had little difficulty in convincing 
the Allies that peace with Napoleon would be only tem- 
porary, for Alexander himself had frequently asserted that 
opinion ; that the Regency of the Empress would merely 
mean that Napoleon would continue to reign under her name ; 
and therefore that the only reasonable policy was the restora- 
tion of Louis XVIII. The Czar remarked that there was no 
enthusiasm for the Bourbons, and that the French army had 
shown itself loyal to its chief, the Emperor. Talleyrand 
replied that if the Senate deposed Napoleon, the soldiers, 
who had been fighting for their country more than their 
leader, would follow the desire of the nation. Alexander 
agreed, and, to encourage the Senate, a proclamation was 
issued and signed by him, in the following terms : — 

" The Allied Sovereigns support the wishes of France ; 
they will not treat any more with Napoleon nor with any 
member of his Family ; the conditions of peace will be im- 



proved by that guarantee ; for the happiness of Europe France 
must remain great and strong; they will respect her in- 
tegrity as it existed under her legitimate Kings ; they will 
recognise, they will guarantee the Constitution that France 
may^'give herself ; in consequence, they invite the Senate to 
designate a Provisional Government to provide for the 
administration and to prepare the Constitution which will 
best suit France." 

Next day, the 1st of April, the Senate nominated the 
members of the Provisional Government, of whom Talleyrand 
was the chief ; and the General Council and Municipal Council 
of Paris agreed to the issue of a proclamation which said, 
"The two Councils declare that they formally renounce 
all obedience towards Napoleon Bonaparte." 

On the 2nd, the Senate passed a unanimous preliminary 
vote in favour of the deposition of the Emperor and his 
family. On the same day the Provisional Government issued 
a proclamation to the army, in which occurred the words : 
" Soldiers, you are no longer the soldiers of Napoleon, the 
Senate and the whole of France absolve you from your oaths." 
Napoleon was at Fontainebleau, gathering together his 
resources. The troops from Paris and Versailles, the corps 
of Marmont and Mortier, drew in towards him, and on the 
2nd April the army he had led towards the Rhine had re- 
joined him. On that day Caulaincourt returned from Paris, 
where he had obtained two audiences with the Czar. To his 
appeals Alexander had replied with his customary declara- 
tion, " Peace with Napoleon would be no more than a truce," 
and when Caulaincourt spoke of a Regency the Czar said, 
" But what would be done with the Emperor ? The father 
is an invincible obstacle to the recognition of his son." 
Alexander said that if Napoleon would abdicate suitable 
provision would be made for him ; he would be welcomed in 
Russia, or he would be given an island— Corsica or Elba. 
Caulaincourt continuing to argue for a Regency, Alexander 
concluded the interview, urging the immediate abdication 


of the Emperor as the only possible basis for all further 

It was the existence of Napoleon that stood in the way of 
his dynasty. Nesselrode, Alexander's minister, pointedly 
remarked that in Russia the obstacle would soon be got rid of. 

Caulaincourt had an interview with Schwartzenberg, 
from whom he learned that Austria also was definitely 
opposed to the idea of a Regency. This should have been 
enough, but Caulaincourt, who can have been under no 
illusions, went to Napoleon with the report that his abdication 
and departure from France would bring about a Regency. 

Next morning, the 3rd of April, Napoleon held a review 
of two divisions of the Guard in the Cour du Cheval Blanc of 
the Palace of Fontainebleau. The declaration of the Allies 
that they would not treat with Napoleon, would not affect 
the troops, but the deposition of the Emperor by Paris, the 
Senate, and the Government, was a serious matter. 

Napoleon went amongst the men, spoke to many of 
them, and distributed decorations ; he was testing 
their fidelity. Then, in the centre of the Court, he 
summoned the officers about him, and delivered the 
following harangue : " Officers, under-officers, and soldiers 
of my Old Guard ! The enemy has stolen three marches 
upon us. He has entered Paris. I have offered the 
Emperor Alexander a peace bought by great sacrifices, 
France with her ancient boundaries, renouncing conquests, 
losing all that we have gained since the Revolution. Not 
only has he refused, he has done more : at the perfidious 
suggestion of those emigres to whom I have accorded their 
lives, and whom I have loaded with benefits, he authorises 
them to wear the white cockade, and soon he will be wanting 
to substitute it in preference to the national cockade. In a 
few days I am going to attack Paris ; I count upon you." 
He had been received in silence so far, and, anxious to put 
the matter to the test, he said, " Am I right ? " Instantly 
there was a roar of shouts, " Vive VEmpereur ! A Paris ! A 


Paris ! " Reassured, Napoleon went on : " We will show 
them that the French nation is mistress of herself, that as we 
have been the mistress for so long in other countries, we shall 
always be so in our own, and, in short, that we are capable 
of defending our colours, our independence, and the integrity 
of our territory." The conclusion was received with a re- 
newed burst of cheering. Napoleon could rely upon his 


But although the Guard, and many of the officers and 
soldiers of other regiments, might retain an unquenchable 
fidelity to their great Captain, the Marshals and leading 
Generals saw plainly that the cause of Napoleon was lost. 
It was known that Marmont's allegiance had been shaken, 
and French emissaries were sent to induce him to betray his 
master and benefactor. They represented to him that it 
would be a patriotic act to put an end to the conflict, which 
would henceforth be merely a civil war, since the Senate and 
the Government of France had deposed Napoleon. Marmont 
was convinced. He wrote in the night of the 3rd April to 
Schwartzenberg that the decree of the Senate had destroyed 
the oath of fidelity to the Emperor, and that to prevent civil 
war he was prepared " to quit with my troops the army of 
Napoleon," upon certain conditions, which he formulated, 
with regard to the personal safety of the Emperor. When 
Napoleon heard of this cruel and, whatever the motive, 
inexcusable treachery, he was dumbfounded for a moment. 
Then he said : " The ungrateful man ; he will suffer for it 

more than I." 

It was arranged that Marmont's troops should be brought 
within the lines of the Allies in the evening of the 4th April. 
Before the Marshal's treason was known at Fontainebleau 
a more decisive event had occurred there. 

At the morning parade in the great court, Napoleon was 
received with acclamations. Some of the Marshals then 
thought it time to interfere. When the review was over 
Marshals Ney, Lefebvre, and Moncey, who were joined 


afterwards by Macdonald and Oudinot, followed Napoleon 
into his room. Ney, as their spokesman, bluntly told him 
that his abdication was necessary. The Marshals and 
Generals were tired of war. Napoleon's system of appealing 
to cupidity as the chief motive of men's acts, broke down 
when the recipients of honours and comforts had obtained 
all that they could expect. And there were now too many 
great dignitaries for the shrunken forces at disposal. Ney, 
for example, had command of no more than a brigade. Even 
the most combative man must shrink from the prospect of 
interminable campaigns, with no intervals for the relaxations 
of ordinary life. It was now evident that Napoleon would 
never give in ; that he would continue fighting till not a man 
was left alive ; that they were to be the wandering Jews of 
warfare : for if he were to regain his position the whole 
career of conquest, with another expedition into Russia, 
would be begun over again. 

Ney therefore told Napoleon, with frankness, that his 
position was hopeless. He even adverted to the plots for his 
assassination which were afloat. Nesselrode's sneer had 
spurred on Talleyrand, and others, to provide the final 
guarantee that Napoleon would cease to disturb Europe. 
The Emperor's life was threatened. 

In reply, he spoke of the forces he still had in hand, 
and explained his plans for defeating the Allies, but his 
remarks were received, even by his most loyal friends, 
Berthier, Maret, Caulaincourt, Bertrand, in chilling silence. 
With any other man something might have been done, but 
all knew their Emperor, whose pugnacious obstinacy passed 
the bounds of reason. He was like a headstrong child, with- 
out self-control, and it was their task to bring him into the 
path of sober sense. At length Napoleon dismissed them all 
except Caulaincourt, and then, relying upon what that 
courtier told him of the Czar's demeanour and intentions, 
he wrote out a conditional abdication in favour of his son : — 

" The allied Powers having proclaimed that the Emperor 


Napoleon was the only obstacle to the re-establishment of 
peace in Europe, the Emperor Napoleon, faithful to his 
oath, declares that he is ready to descend from the throne, 
to leave France, and even give up his life, for the welfare 
of the country, inseparable from the rights of his son, of the 
Regency of the Empress, and of the laws of the Empire." 

This declaration he gave to Caulaincourt with instructions 
to take it to the Czar, accompanied by Ney and Macdonald. 
They were to acquaint INIarmont, whom they would encounter 
on their way, with their errand, and were to invite him to join 
them. When they reached Marmont and showed him the 
signed abdication, that Marshal was much perturbed, for it 
seemed that Napoleon's act had made his intended treachery 
aimless. He went with them to Paris and in a personal inter- 
view with Schwartzenberg withdrew his promise to bring 
over his troops to the Allies. But in his absence General 
Sauham, whom he had left in command, took the troops 
into the lines of the Allies, in the night of the 4th April. 

Napoleon's emissaries were received by the Czar on the same 
evening. Their arguments, with the abdication in their 
hands, were directed to the establishment of a Regency, and 
the withdrawal of Napoleon from France. The Czar tempo- 
rised. He was waiting for news of the movement of Mar- 
mont's corps. He received the delegates in a sympathetic 
manner, and allowed it to appear that he was impressed 
by their pleading. They should return in the morning, when 
he would have had the opportunity of consulting his Allies . He 
already knew that they would not accept a Regency. In the 
night the desired information arrived of the loss to Napoleon 
of Marmont's force. Consequently, when Caulaincourt, Ney, 
and Macdonald, at 9 a.m. on the 5th April, were received 
again by the Czar, who had now the King of Prussia at his 
side, Alexander was in a position to observe that even the 
soldiers were abandoning Napoleon, and therefore that a 
Napoleonic Regency could not be accepted. The uncondi- 
tional abdication of Napoleon was demanded. He would be 


given the sovereignty of the Island of Elba, and would retain 
the title of Emperor. 

It was not the defection of Marmont which put an end to 
the Regency project. The Czar could not ignore the opposi- 
tion of his Allies and of the French Government ; nor would 
it have been easy to repudiate the engagements he had him- 
self already made. The Regency had from the fi^'^t been 
considered and rejected. Marmont's treason weakened the 
military position of Napoleon, and it had a depressmg moral 
effect upon his army. The Czar knew it was about to take 
place when Napoleon's emissaries were appealing tor a 
Regency, and he waited until it was accomplished in order 
to justify and strengthen his refusal. Marmont s treason 
merely gave the Czar an additional argument. 

When the plenipotentiaries returned to Fontainebleau with 
their message in the evening of the 5th April, Napoleon, as 
before, replied to them by speaking of his military prospects, 
of the order he had given for the movement towards the 
Loire • and the Marshals reiterated that the position was 
hopeless and insisted upon the unconditional abdication. 
Napoleon dismissed them. The Marshals then took a further 
step • they countermanded Napoleon's orders for the march 
towards the Loire, with the result that no such movement was 

begun. , ^T r\ J- 4. 

On the 6th Napoleon received Marshals Ney, Oudinot 
Macdonald, and Lefebvre, and again showed how he could 
continue the conflict against the Allies. Their reply was 
that if he succeeded in reaching the Loire it would on y 
mean a civil war. Thereupon Napoleon, with the remai-k, 
- You wish for repose ! Well, have it then 1 " wrote out the 
final act of abdication :— -, ., ^ .u 17^ 

''The Allied Powers having proclaimed that the Ji.m- 
peror Napoleon was the only obstacle to the re-estabhsh- 
ment of peace in Europe, the Emperor Napoleon faithful 
to his oath, declares that he renounces for himself and his 
heirs the thrones of France and Italy, because there is no 


From a contemporary engraving 


personal sacrifice, even were it of life itself, which he is not 
ready to make to the interest of France." 

Ney went off in triumph with this document to Paris, 
accompanied by Caulaincourt. The Senate on the same day 
proclaimed the accession of Louis XVIII. When these fact's 
became known there was a general rush of office-seekers 
from Fontainebleau to Paris. Napoleon was left with his 
Guard and a few other staunch adherents. 

The first abdication had been conditional upon the estab- 
lishment of a Regency, but that reservation was not plainly 
stated and was not generally understood. Men thought they 
were absolved from their allegiance, a sentiment which 
played havoc with the loyalty of the army. To the soldiers 
an abdication was an abdication. Napoleon's prestige, his 
most precious possession, had been gradually falling ever 
since the Russian campaign, and he was openly bfamed, 
here and there, among officers and men, for having failed to 
protect the capital. The Guard remained staunch, and there 
were still many ardent worshippers in every corps, but there 
were also, now, a good many grumblers. These disloyal 
feelings were strengthened by the abdication. The effect 
is made plain by the following entry in the diarv of an English 
detenu : " 5th April. The Emperor Napoleon appeared on 
the Parade ; but finding a marked difference on the part not 
only of the officers but even the troops, he retired in about 
ten minutes to the palace, and appeared no more before the 
army as their master." The difference between the en- 
thusiastic devotion of the troops, expecting to be led to Paris, 
on the morning of the 4th April, and their coldness on the 5th,' 
was the direct result of the intervening act of abdication. 

The second, unconditional, abdication was forced ; it 
followed almost of necessity from the first, which had 
destroyed the loyalty of the army. Napoleon regretted the 
second abdication as soon as it was made, and endeavoured 
to have it withdrawn. He did not realise that it was the first 
abdication that had ruined him. 


His abdication enabled him to take the grand line of self- 
sacrifice for the sake of France. He was, in fact, too proud 
to let it seem that he was willing to ask France to fight for his 
personal advantage. He wished it to be supposed that he 
cared nothing for a crown. If he asked for the title of Em- 
peror, it was merely an honourable recognition of past 
services. He was also in a position to declare, this time 
with truth, that he had adhered to his determination never 
to make a humiliating peace. He remarked to Bausset, 
" J'abdique, et ne cede rien." That was a consistent and 
manly attitude, which stood him in good stead when he 
presented himself again in 1815. 

At this time Marie Louise was at Blois. She had left 
Paris on the 29th March, in accordance with the fatal 
decision of the Council of the Regency. The little King 
of Rome, as if conscious of the terrible consequences 
of the move, declined to go into the carriage waiting for him. 
He fought and struggled, holding on to banisters and door- 
handles, and had to be forcibly carried into the vehicle, 
kicking and shouting, " I do not want to go. Since papa is 
not here, I am the master. Do not go to Rambouillet. It is a 
miserable castle." 

Packing had been going on through the night. The silver 
was sent off in wagons early in the morning under escort, 
with the private treasure of Napoleon, and the Crown 
treasure, the diamonds belonging to Marie Louise, and the 
Crown diamonds. With the Empress went the whole of her 
very extensive wardrobe, and also the robes, uniforms, and 
linen of Napoleon. The procession was headed by ten 
berlines de ville, painted green and with the Imperial arms 
upon the panels. The Empress took with her the chief 
persons of her suite, of whom the most important was the 
Duchesse de Montebello, her lady-in-waiting. After the 
berlines came the Coronation coach, covered with cloth and 
filled with a quantity of articles thrown in at the last moment ; 
and then followed a large number of wagons, with the 


personal effects. The escort was 1200 cavalry. Although 
the day was well advanced when the procession started, very 
few persons had assembled, and they made no sign either of 
relief or regret. A few idle spectators watched in silence the 
departure of the Empire. 

Rambouillet was reached in the afternoon, and the next 
day, the 30th March, they were at Chartres, where they were 
joined at night ])y Joseph and Jerome with their Queens and 
some of the ministers. 

At Vendome, on the 1st April, the Empress received a 
letter from Napoleon, which he had sent off from the Cour-de- 
France early in the morning of the 31st, with orders to pro- 
ceed to Blois, nearer to Fontainebleau than Tours, which had 
at first been their destination. On the 2nd April the Empress 
accordingly reached Blois, where she was received in the same 
chilling silence that she had experienced on leaving Paris, 
and also at every stage of the journey. 

At Blois were now collected, besides the Empress and King 
of Rome and their suites, Joseph, Louis, Jerome, Madame 
Mere, the Arch-Chancellor Cambaceres, and some of the 
Ministers and Councillors of State, who had been at Tours. 
The town was full of wagons and carriages, with the Treasure, 
diamonds, silver, and other valuables ; and the various 
escorts came to some 1800 cavalry. 

On the 7th April Colonel Galbois arrived from Fontaine- 
bleau with a letter from Napoleon, written after his final 
abdication. It was in terms of the most profound abasement ; 
his hour had come, he would not drag down Marie Louise 
with him ; she should find her protector in her father ; and 
he referred to the possibility of his death, for if attempts were 
made upon his life he would do away with himself.^ Galbois 
says that Marie Louise, touched by the terms of this communi- 
cation, insisted that she desired at once to go to Fontaine- 
bleau to console her husband in his agony ; and that he 

' Fournier, A,, "Marie Louise et la chute de Napoleou," Revue Ilis- 
torique, Vol. 82, 1903, p. 14. 


dissuaded her by declaring that the road was not safe 
whereupon she abandoned the idea and gave him a most 
affectionate letter for Napoleon, which he duly delivered 

Marie Louise had been five days at Blois, receivmg a letter 
from Napoleon every day. In none of them had he expressed 
any desire for her society. Now he told her to rely upon her 
father, and not upon him, and the messenger who had last 
been with her husband put difficulties in the way of her 
joining him. She had an escort and there was no serious 
impediment to her making the journey in safety But it 
was at least doubtful whether the Emperor would be pleased 
to see her. Not unnaturally she wished to be assured that 
Napoleon desired her presence. If he had wanted her and 
had said so, she could and would have jomed him. 

One of the greatest of Napoleon's many mistakes was his 
attitude towards his wife in these critical days. " I under- 
stand women," he was saying to Caulaincourt, '' and espe- 
cially my wife ; to offer her a prison instead of the Court 
of France such as I made it, would be a very great trial. 
If she came to me with a sad and bored face, it would make 
me miserable. I prefer solitude to the spectacle of grief and 
boredom. If she were inspired to come to me, I should receive 
her with open arms. If not, let her remain at Parma or 
Florence, wherever she may be reigning. I should only 
ask for my son. Csesar may return to the condition of a 
citizen, but it is not easy for his wife to give up her position 
as the consort of Csesar." 

He did not perceive that at Elba the presence of his wife, 
an Emperor's daughter, and of his son, an Emperor's grand- 
son would have helped him to retain his Imperial standing 
before the world. A pride akin to madness, a morbid 
touchiness, consummated his ruin. He would not present 
himself as a fallen man. He could not bear the thought that 
at Elba his wife might regret Paris and Vienna. 

On the 8th April, Good Friday, Joseph and Jerome 
endeavoured to persuade the Empress to go with them 


beyond the Loire. They said that at Blois she would become 
a hostage in the hands of the enemy, and that the welfare 
of the State and of her family required her removal to a 
place of safety. She declined, saying she was not afraid of 
either the Germans or the Russians. When they insisted, 
Jerome in particular speaking with some warmth, JNIarie 
Louise burst into tears, and summoned her household, who 
rushed in tumultuously, under the impression that physical 
compulsion had been threatened. 

It was a tactless move on the part of Napoleon's brothers. 
The distracted woman had reflected, since her first com- 
passionate impulse to console her fallen husband, that, as he 
had abdicated, he was no longer in a position to confer upon 
her the position which she had a right to expect. If he had 
been of royal blood it would have been different, but he was 
in fact merely a lav.yer's son whom she had married on 
conditions which had not been maintained. The Bonaparte 
brothers by their efforts at domination over her, had succeeded 
in emphasising the fact that the whole Corsican brood was 
not of her class. The result was that she wrote at once to 
her father begging an asylum in Austria. " All I hope," she 
said, " is to live quietly, no matter where, in your dominions, 
so that I may bring up my son." 

But another change took place a few hours later, upon the 
arrival at Blois of Count Schouvaloff, sent by the Czar to 
escort the Empress to Orleans, and thence to Fontainebleau. 
After his arrival she wrote again to her father, telling him 
that the Czar's emissary had exposed to her '* the situation 
in which the Emperor finds himself at present. I leave 
to-morrow for Fontainebleau." 

It has been customary to suppose that Schouvaloff's 
mission was to prevent Marie Louise from going to Fontaine- 
bleau, and to obtain control over her movements. Her letter 
shows that it was precisely the opposite. Bausset, also, says 
the Empress " was to go to Orleans and thence to Fontaine- 
bleau." That version is confirmed and the matter placed 


beyond doubt by the letter of Stadion to IMetternich, from 
Chatillon, of the 16th April. ^ Writmg at the command of the 
Emperor Francis, he says : " The Emperor has just learned, 
by the reports of Prince Schwartzenberg, that General Count 
Schouvaloff has been sent to the Archduchess Marie Louise 
at Blois to conduct her to Fontainebleau. His Majesty 
would have expected that the Allies would not take any 
decision with regard to the person of his daughter without 
letting him know and without having previously concerted 
matters with him. From the moment that the Archduchess 
finds herself separated from her husband, it is to her august 
father alone that she is bound, and it is he also that can and 
must take her under his protection. The Emperor demands 
that his daughter, with her child, should be sent to him, so 
that he may conduct her, in a manner worthy of her birth, 
to his dominions, and that he may give to her and to her son 
a suitable establishment until the time when her future 
shall be definitely determined. The Emperor desires. Prince, 
that you should immediately take the necessary steps in 
the direction indicated, and that you should inform him, 
without the least delay, and in detail, of the measures that 
you shall have taken to return the Archduchess into his care. 
His Majesty repairs to-morrow to Troyes, where he intends 
to await the replies from Paris. It will therefore be in that 
direction that the voyage of Her Imperial Majesty should be 

The Emperor Francis was determined that Marie Louise 
and her son should live under his control in his dominions. 
The Czar Alexander, with the consideration for the feelings 
and happiness of Napoleon which he had shown throughout, 
had endeavoured to bring the husband and wife together. 
In accordance with his wish, on the 9th April, before the 
objection of the Emperor Francis could take effect, Schouva- 
loff conducted the Empress and her son to Orleans, the first 
stage towards Fontainebleau. 

^ Quoted by Fouruier^ op. cit., p. 13, from the archives at Vieuua. 


Before their departure the Ministers and Councillors of 
State and other functionaries of the former Imperial Govern- 
ment, jostled each other to get passports. These were issued 
by the Mayor of Blois, with a minute description of their 
persons, even in the case of the ex-Kings of Spain, Holland, 
and Westphalia, of Madame Mere, and the Due de Rovigo, 
Minister of Police. To protect these travellers, recently so 
powerful, the passports were countersigned by Schouvaloff, 
and such was the pressure of applicants for his signature, in 
his room at the inn, that he had to restrain the most impatient 
by saying that he was signing as fast as possible but could 
not do it all at once. The members of the late Government 
then proceeded to pay themselves their salaries and allow- 
ances, with full travelling expenses, out of the Imperial 
Treasure which had come from Paris. Then, with passports 
in one hand and money in the other, the various functionaries 
rushed off to Paris to try to get posts in the new Govern- 

Then the Imperial Family started for Orleans : Schouva- 
loff, the protector ; Marie Louise, the King of Rome, and 
their suites, with their cavalry escort ; Cardinal Fesch and 
Madame Mere — " It is not yet over," said she, " we Corsicans 
are not inexperienced in revolutions " ; the ex-Kings Joseph 
and Jerome — Louis remaining behind at Blois absorbed in 
his religious devotions ; and finally the long procession of 
wagons with the remainder of the Treasure and the Imperial 
valuables of all sorts. Orleans was reached late in the 

At Orleans, in the night, Meneval received a letter from 
Napoleon in which he said that it had been arranged with the 
Emperor of Austria that the Crown should go to the King 
of Rome with the Empress as Regent, and therefore that the 
Empress should look to her father for protection, as anything 
might happen, even his own death. Napoleon must have 
known that there was no hope from Austria. Metternich 
on the same day was writing a letter in which he said : " The 


Emperor (Francis) will make his entry into Paris with the 
Count d'Artois ; it will be the Emperor of Austria who will 
instal the Bourbons.''^ 

For Marie Louise the essence of Napoleon's letter was that 
he again told her to depend upon her father. She was now 
determined not to go to Fontainebleau, but to wait at Orleans 
for news from her father. She wrote on that day to her 
father : " The Emperor is going to the Island of Elba ; I have 
explained to him that nothing will induce me to leave this 
place before I have seen you and learned from you what you 
advise. They want to take me from here against my will." 

Schouvaloff, in accordance with his instructions from the 
Czar, and supported by Joseph and Jerome, was still en- 
deavouring to persuade Marie Louise to go to Fontainebleau. 
She defmitely declined. She had been prepared to do her 
duty. It would not have been agreeable to live confined 
on a small island, with the mere burlesque of a sovereignty, 
in the society of a fallen man, marriage to whom had been a 
mesalliance for her and who might be capable of telling her 
that it had been one of the principal causes of his downfall ; 
but, if her son was provided for in accordance with his rank, 
she would have consented to submit to a miserable fate. 
When, however, Napoleon told her to look elsewhere for a 
protector, it would have been strange indeed if she had 
insisted upon forcing herself upon him. 

Neither liis mother, nor any of his brothers, Joseph, 
Louis, Jerome, who were all at Orleans or Blois, a few hours' 
drive from Fontainebleau, went to see Napoleon. This 
helps to excuse Marie Louise at this time. 

On the 11th April the letter from Stadion, already cited, 
reached Metternich, who acted in accordance with the 
instructions it contained. Lie obtained the sanction of the 
Czar to a change of policy in the direction desired by the 
Emperor Francis. Orders were accordingly sent to Sehou- 

1 As it turned out the Count d'Artois arrived in Paris on the 12th April, 
three days hefore the Emperor Francis. 

r o 

— X ^ 

ii X 'S 

< O - 

O 5^ _- 

./■ < 

X fcJ 

;< " -a 
X 2 I 


valoff to take Marie Louise to Rambouillet, to meet her 
father there. At 5 p.m., on the 12th April, these instructions 
reached Orleans. At 8 p.m. they were acted upon. Marie 
Louise and her son left Orleans with Count Schouvaloff and 
an escort of the Guard, soon to be relieved by Cossacks, in 
the direction of Rambouillet, and away from Fontainebleau. 
With them went the last flickering hopes of the Napoleonic 



THE second abdication, though written in his own 
hand, was not signed by Napoleon. It was to be 
deHvered to the AlHes on the understanding 
that suitable provision would be made for the fallen 
monarch. Negotiations were at once entered upon between 
Caulaincourt, supported by Ney and Macdonald, on behalf 
of Napoleon, and the Czar's representative, Nesselrode, on 
behalf of the Allies. It was agreed that Na])oleon should be 
given an island in the Mediterranean and an allowance. 
Corfu, Corsica, and Elba were suggested, and Elba finally 

Many thought Elba was too near to Italy, and even to 
France, but Alexander insisted that Napoleon could be 
trusted. Talleyrand, in a letter of the 7th April, 1814, 
wrote : " The question of the Island of Elba arouses dis- 
cussions. The moral condition of Italy does not seem to 
admit of such an establishment." Sir Charles Stewart 
wrote to Lord Bathurst objecting strongly to Elba : "It 
is deeply to be regretted that Lord Castlereagh was not at 
hand to counterbalance by his moral resolution and strong 
sagacity the imprudent and somewhat theatrical generosity 
of the Emperor Alexander." The Czar had desired, as he 
said himself, " to give an illustrious example to the universe 
of liberality to a prostrate enemy." ^ 

^ Alison, "Lives of Lord Castlereagh and Sir Charles Stewart," Vol. 11, 
p. 459. Yonge, " Life of Lord Liverpool," p. 504. 



The Emperor Francis wrote to Metternich, on the 12th 
April : " The important thing is to remove Napoleon from 
France, and God grant that he may be sent very far away. I 
do not approve of the choice of the Island of Elba as a 
residence for Napoleon ; they take it from Tuscany, they 
dispose of what belongs to my family, in favour of foreigners. 
Besides, Napoleon remains too near to France and to Europe. 
However, if the thing cannot be prevented, we must try to 
secure that Elba revert to Tuscany after the death of 
Napoleon, that I be named co-guardian of the child for Parma, 
and that, in case of the death of my daughter and the 
child, the estates destined for them be not reserved for the 
family of Napoleon." 

Napoleon remarked to Caulaincourt : " Austria has no 
bowels." The Emperor Francis was so mean and con- 
temptible as to grudge his son-in-law even the small and 
imimportant Island of Elba. The Czar had it officially pro- 
claimed in the Moniteur that the " Allied Powers neither 
could nor would forget the place that belongs to the Emperor 
Napoleon in the history of the period." But the Emperor 
Francis could think only of the petty loss to his family. 

On the 10th April Lord Castlereagh, Secretary of State for 
Foreign Affairs, arrived in Paris. He disapproved of all the 
proposed arrangements, but waived his objection to the choice 
of Elba in consideration of the agreement already arrived at. 
He declined to agree to any of the other conditions, and 
made special objection to the recognition of the Imperial 

The treaty, as signed on the 11th April by the representa- 
tives of Russia, Prussia, Austria, and Napoleon, is known as 
the Treaty of Fontainebleau, and was in the following terms : — 

" Articles of Treaty l)etween the Allied Powers and His 
Majesty the Emperor Na})oleon. 

" Article 1. — His Majesty the Emperor Napoleon renounces 
for himself, his successors and descendants, as well as for all 


the lucinbers of his Family, all right of sovereignty and 
dominion as well over the French Empire and the Kingdom 
of Italy, as over every other Country. 

" Article 2. — Their Majesties the Emperor Napoleon and 
the Empress Marie Louise shall retain their titles and rank, 
to be enjoyed during their lives. The mother, brother, 
sisters, nephews, and nieces of the Emperor shall also retain, 
wherever they may reside, the titles of Princes of his Family. 

" Article 3. — The Island of Elba, which the Emperor 
Napoleon has chosen as his place of residence, shall form 
during his life a separate principality, which he shall possess 
in full sovereignty and property. The Emperor Napoleon 
shall also be accorded in full property an annual revenue of 
two million francs, which shall be carried as a rent -charge 
upon the great book of France, of which sum one million 
shall go in reversion to the Empress. 

" Article 4. — The Duchies of Parma, Placentia, and 
Guastalla shall be given in full property and sovereignty to 
Her Majesty the Empress Marie Louise. They shall pass to 
her son and his descendants in the direct line. The Prince 
her son shall take henceforth the title of Prince of Parma, 
Placentia, and Guastalla. 

" Article 5. — All the Powers engage to employ their good 
offices with the Barbary States to cause to be respected the 
flag of the Island of Elba, and for that purpose the relations 
of those States shall be assimilated to those of France. 

" Article 6. — There shall be reserved in the territories 
hereby renounced by the Emperor Napoleon, for himself 
and his family, domains, or rent-charges upon the great book 
of France, producing an annual net revenue, free of all 
charges, of 2,500,000 francs. These domains or rent-charges 
shall belong in full property, and to dispose of as they may 
deem fit, to the Princes and Princesses of his family, and shall 
be divided among them in such a manner that the revenue 


of each shall be in the following proportion, that is to say : 
To Madame Mere, 300,000 francs. To the King Joseph and 
his Queen, 500,000 francs. To the King Louis, 200,000 
francs. To the Queen Hortense and her child, 400,000 francs. 
To the King Jerome and his Queen, 500,000 francs. To the 
Princess Elisa, 300,000 francs. To the Princess Pauline, 
300,000 francs. The Princes and Princesses of the family 
of the Emperor will also keep all their property, movable 
and immovable, of whatever nature it may be, which they 
possess by individual and particular right, and especially 
the rent-charges which they all equally enjoy upon the great 
book of France or the Mount Napoleon of Milan. 

" Article 7. — The annual allowance of the Empress 
Josephine shall be reduced to a million in domains or in 
inscriptions upon the great book of France. She will continue 
to enjoy in full ownership her individual property, movable 
and immovable, with power to dispose of it in conformity 
with the laws of France. 

" Article 8. — There shall be given to the Prince Eugene, 
Viceroy of Italy, a suitable establishment out of France. 

" Article 9. — The property which the Emperor Napoleon 
possesses in France, whether as extraordinary domain, or as 
private domain, shall remain with the Crown. Upon the 
funds placed by the Emperor, whether upon the great book, 
or upon the Bank of France, or upon the security of the 
forests, or in any other manner, and which H.M. abandons 
to the Crown, there shall be reserved a capital not exceeding 
two millions, to be employed in gratifications in favour of 
the persons whose names shall be placed upon a list which 
shall be signed by the Emperor Napoleon, and will be sent 
to the French Government. 

" Article 10. — All the diamonds of the Crown will remain 
in France. 

"Article 11. — The Emperor Napoleon will return to the 


Treasury and to the other public chests all the moneys and 
effects which may have been taken out by his orders with the 
exception of the Civil List. 

"Article 12.— The debts of the household of H.M. the 
Emperor Napoleon, as they were on the day of the signing 
of the present treaty, shall be immediately discharged out 
of the arrears due from the Public Treasury to the Civil List, 
according to accounts which shall be signed by a Commis- 
sioner nominated for that purpose. 

" Article 13. — The obligations of the Mount Napoleon of 
Milan towards their creditors, whether French or Foreign, 
shall be redeemed, and no alteration shall be made on this 

" Article 14. — All the necessary passports shall be given 
for free passage for H.M. the Emperor Napoleon, the Empress, 
the Princes, Princesses, and all persons of their suites who 
may wish to accompany them or to establish themselves 
outside of France, as also for the passage of all the equipages, 
horses, and effects that belong to them. The Allied Powers 
consequently will provide officers and troops or escorts. 

*' Article 15. — The French Imperial Guard will furnish 
a detachment of tAvelve hundred to fifteen hundred men 
of all arms to serve as escort to the Emperor Napoleon as far 
as St. Tropez, the place of his embarkation. 

" Article 16. — There will be provided an armed corvette 
and the necessary ships to transport H.M. the Emperor 
Napoleon and his household ; and the corvette will remain 
the full property of H.M. the Emperor. 

"Article 17. — H.M. the Emperor may take with him and 
retain as his guard four hundred men, officers, non-com- 
missioned officers, and privates. 

" Article 18. — All the Frenchmen who may follow H.M. the 
Emperor Napoleon and his family will be obliged to return 


to France within the term of three years if they do not wish 
to lose their quahty as Frenchmen, unless they are included 
in the employments that the French Government reserves 
itself the right to accord after the expiration of that term. 

" Article 19. — The Polish troops of all arms which are in the 
French service shall be at liberty to return to their homes, 
retaining their arms and baggage as evidence of their 
honourable services ; officers, non-commissioned officers, and 
privates shall retain their decorations which have been 
accorded to them and the pensions attached to such decora- 

" Article 20. — The High Allied Powers guarantee the 
execution of all the articles of the present treaty ; they under- 
take to obtain their adoption and their guarantee by France. 

" Article 21. — The present treaty shall be ratified and the 
ratification exchanged at Paris within two days. 

" Done at Paris, April 11th, 1814. 

The Prince de Metternich. 

Austria-, ^ „ ^ -, r. ,. 

t. Comte de Stadion. 

■R T«!«JTA ] -^udre Comte de Rasommouffsky. 

( Charles Robert de Nesselrode. 
Prussia Charles Aug. Baron de Hardenberg. 

Marshal Ney. 


The Provisional Government acceded on behalf of France, 
in the following terms : " The Allied Powers having concluded 
a treaty with His Majesty the Emperor Napoleon, and that 
treaty containing dispositions in the execution of which the 
French Government is in a position to take a part and 
reciprocal explanations having taken place on this point, 
the Provisional Government of France, with the aim of 
concurring effectively in all the measures which have been 
adopted, makes it a duty to declare that it adheres as far as 


need be, and guarantees, in all that concerns France, the 
execution of the stipulations contained in that treaty, 
which has been signed to-day by the Plenipotentiaries of the 
High Allied Powers, and by those of his Majesty the Emperor 
" Paris, the ll//i April, 1814." 

Then follow the signatures of the members of the Pro- 
visional Government, headed by that of Talleyrand. 

That the Bourbon Government should be expressly im- 
plicated, the following declaration was issued by Talleyrand 
on the 31st May, the day after the date of the Treaty of 
Paris : " The undersigned, the Minister Secretary of Slate 
for Foreign Affairs, having acquainted the King with the 
demand which their Excellencies the Plenipotentiaries of the 
Allied Courts have been instructed by their Sovereigns to 
make with regard to the treaty of the 11th April, to which the 
Provisional Government has acceded, it has pleased His 
Majesty to authorise him to declare in His name that the 
clauses of the treaty with which France is charged will be 
faithfully executed. He has, in consequence, the honour to 
so declare by these presents to their Excellencies. 

" The Prince of Benevento. 

" Paris, the Blst May, 1814." 

Castlereagh wrote to Earl Bat hurst, then acting Foreign 
Secretary : — 

" Paris, Afril ISth, 1814. 

" I should have wished to substitute another position in 
lieu of Elba for the seat of Napoleon's retirement, but none 
having the quality of security, on which he insisted, seemed 
disposable to which equal objections did not occur, and I did 
not feel that I could encourage the alternative which M. de 
Caulaincourt assured me Bonaparte repeatedly mentioned, 
namely, an asylum in England." 

On the 27th April, the following qualified accession to the 

< - 

H o 

Z ^ 

O ''• 


treaty was issued : " His Royal Highness, the Prince Regent, 
having full knowledge of the contents of the said treaty, 
accedes to the same in the name and on behalf of His Majesty, 
as far as respects the stipulations relative to the possession 
in sovereignty of the Island of Elba, and also of the Duchies 
of Parma, Placentia, and Guastalla. But His Royal Highness 
is not to be considered, by this act of accession, to have 
become a party, in the name of His Majesty, to any of the 
other provisions and stipulations contained therein." 

England, through Lord Castlereagh, had from the first 
disapproved of the choice of Elba, but had agreed to submit 
to the wishes of the Czar on that point. England expressly 
repudiated all responsibility for any of the other conditions 
of the treaty, and Lord Castlereagh had made a special 
reference to the British refusal to accord the title of Emperor. 

Napoleon, for his part, trusted no Power but England, 
and made repeated efforts to obtain " an asylum in England," 
the only country which offered " the quality of security," 
that is, safety from assassination. Castlereagh, while offi- 
cially declining the desired permission, was not disinclined 
to consider the idea. On the 5th May, 1814, he wrote to 
Lord Liverpool : "If his taste for an asylum in England 
should continue, would you allow him to reside in some 
distant province ? It would obviate much alarm on the 
Continent."^ It is not altogether surprising therefore that 
Napoleon should have believed that he would be well received 
in England. At his last interview with IMacdonald at Fon- 
tainebleau he said that " possibly he should not remain long 
in Elba, but visit England, and study the great and liberal 
establishments of that country." He spoke of the project to 
Campbell, Schouvaloff, Koller, and others : and soon after 
his arrival at Elba, he said, according to Colonel Vincent, 
that if he left Elba it would be for England. 

Those who thought Elba was unsuitable had no reasonable 
alternative to offer. Napoleon would not have accepted a 
^ Yonge, " Tlie Life of Lord Liverpool," p. 508, 


more distant place of exile. Rather than submit to 
be sent further away he would have fought on in despera- 
tion with his Guard and such other troops as he could collect. 
He might have gained some successes, with tremendous re- 
sults. In any case, to hunt him like a bandit and wear him 
down by overwhelming numbers, wovild have been horrible. 

The Treaty of Fontainebleau made Napoleon an inde- 
pendent Sovereign, or Prince. He called himself, with more 
right than humour, " Napoleon, Emperor and King of the 
Island of Elba." As an independent monarch he was, in 
theory, entitled to complete freedom of action. There was 
nothing in the treaty to prevent him from landing, when he 
chose, on the coast of Italy, or even of France, though no 
brother Sovereign was under any obligation to receive him 
as a visitor. Theoretically, and legally. Napoleon might go 
where he pleased, provided he obtained a passport or other 
permission to land on foreign soil. Practically, however, 
it was well understood that he was expected to remain 
quietly on his island, and that any attempt to leave it would 
be regarded as an assault upon the peace of Europe, and any 
monarch who received the perturbator would be considered 
a partner in the attack. What would be the situation if 
Europe declined, or neglected, to carry out her part of the 
treaty, had not been considered. 

It was known that Talleyrand regarded the treaty as a 
mere dodge for removing Napoleon from France. Once 
that was accomplished the great man would be securely 
confined in some safer and more distant prison. 

The world had now to learn that Louis XVIII had all 
Talleyrand's contempt for treaties. The only stipulations 
in the treaty which he did not ignore were those with regard 
to Elba and the brig. Every single one of the other clauses 
he repudiated entirely. He paid no money to Napoleon or to 
any member of his family, and when the Emperor made out 
a list of the persons to whom he wished certain gratifications 
to be paid, in accordance with Article 6, no notice was taken. 


On the other hand, the Corsican lawyer's son adhered like 
a gentleman to the bargain he had made. Besides the 
Crowns of France and Italy and the rest of the French Empire, 
he gave up : the Crown jewels, many of which had been 
bought by him out of his Civil List ; the private estates 
which he had also bought out of savings from his Civil List ; 
the furniture and ornaments of the Tuileries and other 
palaces, which had been swept bare by the Revolution, and 
which he had re-stocked out of his savings. 

Without these properties the French Government would 
have been put to great expense to provide what was necessary 
for Louis XVIII and the Royal Family. Except the Crown 
jewels, they belonged to Napoleon personally, and he 
exchanged them by signed contract, for Elba and certain 
annuities. It was a formal bargain on a matter of money, 
which no gentleman would think of repudiating. Louis 
XVIII, however, was not ashamed to keep what Napoleon 
had given up, and decline the payment he had solemnly 
promised to make in return. 

The Provisional Government went so far as to seize the 
wagons which had accompanied Marie Louise to Blois and 
Orleans, which contained Napoleon's private cash savings. 
He had annually put by a large sum from his Civil List. In 
1813 and 1814 he had drawn heavily upon this reserve for 
the pay of his soldiers, but a sum of ten to twelve million 
francs remained, and it was expressly reserved to Napoleon 
by the 11th Article of the Treaty of Fontainebleau. 

The Provisional Government sent an agent, Dudon, who 
arrived at Orleans on the 10th April. He seized and for- 
warded to Paris these savings ; the Crown Treasure, with the 
exception of six million francs left with the Empress ; the 
Crown diamonds ; the diamonds belonging to the Empress ; 
the silver, worth about one hundred and twenty thousand 
pounds (the Empress had to borrow from the Bishop of 
Orleans for her service) ; Napoleon's tobacco - boxes, his 
usual form of present, worth altogether about sixteen 


thousand pounds ; Napoleon's Imperial robes, uniforms 
and other clothing, down to shirts and handkerchiefs. 

Meanwhile the great soldier was passing days of misery 
at Fontainebleau. It was supposed that he would put an end 
to his life. Every traveller from Fontainebleau was asked, 
" Is he dead ? " The wish was father to the thought. The 
death of Napoleon would have been a relief to the world. 
He knew that perfectly well. He had already, when at the 
height of his power, said that on his death a sigh of relief 
would go round. Napoleon also knew that his death at that 
time would improve the prospects of his son, and lighten the 
terms to be imposed upon France by her conquerors. When 
he wrote to Marie Louise, and to Meneval, that his death 
might occur, he was acknowledging these facts. 

His dramatic pose at this time much impressed those about 
him at Fontainebleau. " For some days," writes Fain, his 
secretary, " he seems preoccupied with a secret design. He 
becomes animated only when running over the funereal pages 
of history. The subject of his most intimate conversations 
is always the voluntary death which the men of antiquity 
did not hesitate to give themselves in a similar situation to 
his own." This is characteristic of Napoleon's histrionic 
spirit, and his tendency to refer to classic examples. 

Fain says that he was informed that ever since the retreat 
from Moscow, Napoleon had carried on his person a small 
bag containing a poison, said to be opium. In the night of 
12th-13th April the valet who slept outside his half -open 
door was awake, and he saw his master put something in a 
glass of water, drink it, and go to bed. Soon afterwards 
Napoleon complained of severe internal pain and sent for the 
resident doctor, Yvan. Bertrand, Caulaincourt, and Maret 
were also summoned, and arrived promptly. But the poison 
was weak, and Napoleon recovered, after a profuse perspira- 
tion. He exclaimed, " God does not wish it." Yvan lost 
his head, rushed out of the palace, jumped on to a horse, 
and galloped off wildly into the darkness. He explained 


afterwards that he was afraid of being accused of poisoning 
the Emperor. Fain conchides with this remark : " What 
happened is the secret of the interior. In any case on the 
morning of the 13th Napoleon rises and dresses as usual." 
Fain had doubts as to the truth of the story. 

Segur, who wrote later, says the valet at the door was 
Hubert, and that those who entered the room were Turenne, 
Caulaincourt, Bertrand, Maret, and Yvan. He says that 
both Turenne and Yvan afterAvards spoke to him of the 
attempted suicide. Constant, the chief valet, in his 
" Memoirs," says that the valet in attendance was Pelard ; 
that the persons summoned to the bedroom were himself, 
Caulaincourt, and Yvan, that after two slight bouts of sick- 
ness. Napoleon took a cup of tea, and was better, and that 
next morning he was quite well. Constant saw on the floor 
in front of the fire the remains of a small bag which Napoleon 
had carried about him ever since the Spanish campaign, and 
which contained poison. 

Macdonald had an interviev,- with Napoleon on the 13th, 
the morning after the sickness, and observed only that the 
Emperor looked as if recovering from a dream, which would 
be natural after a dose of opium. 

Napoleon himself afterwards made frequent and strong 
remarks about the cowardice of suicide, and the contempt 
he felt for those who had not the fortitude to live through 
their misfortunes. He said it required more courage to sur- 
vive the first throne of the world, than to kill himself. But 
such opinions would not prevent a man from putting an end 
to his life in a moment of impulsive despair ; and at St. 
Helena he admitted the truth of the story. ^ He was 
not proud of it, for it laid him open to the charge of double 
cowardice, of inability to face either life or death. 

His half-hearted attempt having failed. Napoleon now 
determined to put his trust in time and the possibilities of 

^ Montholon, " Re'cits de la captivite de TEmpereur Napoleon a Sainte 
Helene," Vol. II, p. 418. 


the future. " Only the dead never return," he remarked 
significantly to Bausset. 

A heavy gloom hung over the palace at Fontainebleau. 
The great apartments were closed. Napoleon and his suite 
occupied the smaller rooms on the first floor. All the 
Marshals had gone. Berthier had obtained Napoleon's 
permission to go to Paris in connection with some affairs 
arising from his duties as Major-General of the army of the 
Emperor, remarking that he would be back next day. " He 
will not come back," said Napoleon to Maret ; and he was 
right. To a more recent friend, Macdonald, who made no 
protestations of eternal loyalty, the Emperor gave the sword 
which Murad Bey had carried at the battle of Mount Thabor. 
The chief valet. Constant, and the famous mameluke Roustam, 
went off without saying farewell, each with such booty as he 
had been able to lay his hands on. 

A small handful of men who for various reasons, not in 
every case disinterested, were willing to make the journey 
to Elba, comprised nearly the whole of his following. Two 
officers who stayed to the end were afterwards closely 
associated with the Emperor. They were Colonels Gourgaud 
and Montholon, who were destined to make the journey to 
St. Helena. 



THE Powers appointed Commissioners to escort 
Napoleon to his new domain. General Roller 
represented Austria ; General Schouvaloff , Russia ; 
Count Truchsess-Waldburg, Prussia ; and Colonel 
Neil Campbell, England. 

The Austrian, Russian, and Prussian Commissioners were 
instructed to give Napoleon the Imperial title, and all the 
deference due to it, in accordance with the Treaty of Fontaine - 
bleau. The British Commissioner received no official 
information as to the treat}^ Lord Castlereagh's instruc- 
tions to him were that he should conduct himself " with 
every proper respect and attention to Napoleon, to whose 
secure asylum in the Island of Elba it is the Avish of His 
Royal Highness the Prince Regent to afford every facility 
and protection."^ The Imperial title and honours are im- 
pliedly excluded. 

Campbell arrived at Fontainebleau on the 16th April, and 
in the evening had some conversation with General Bertrand, 
the Grand Marshal of the Palace. Bertrand said that the 
Emperor, " which title," says Campbell, " appeared to be 
repeated with studied formality," wished to travel incognito, 
and to change the port of embarkation from St. Tropez to 
Piombino, in Tuscany, just opposite to Elba. Kollcr had 
already been approached with the same request, and had 
sent his A.D.C., Major Clam, to the Emperor Francis at 

^ Campbell, ''Napoleon at Fontainebleau and Elba," p. 154. 


Raiiibouillet for an answer. Napoleon's object was to travel 
through the north of Italy, and so draw near the army of 
Italy, which was still loyal to him, but the Allies would not 
consent to any such change of route. 

Bertrand asked Campbell to go with them as far as Elba 
itself, and to remain there at least until affairs were settled ; 
and he was visibly relieved when Campbell said he had 
instructions to do this if desired. 

On the 17th Napoleon received the Commissioners, separ- 
ately. First the Russian, Schouvaloff, for about five minutes, 
a few polite questions being asked about the Czar Alexander. 
Then the Austrian, Koller, also for five minutes, to whom 
Napoleon expressed his indignation at the presence of a 
Prussian Commissioner ; they might as well have sent others 
from Baden or Darmstadt. Then Campbell was summoned 
for a long and friendly interview, the Prussian being sent 
for last and dismissed at once with a cold bow and a remark 
of strong objection to his presence. 

Campbell says that when he entered Napoleon's apartment : 
" I saw before me a short active-looking man, who was 
rapidly pacing the length of his apartment, like some wild 
animal in his cell. He was dressed in an old green uniform 
with gold epaulets, blue pantaloons, and red topboots, 
unshaven, uncombed, with the fallen particles of snuff 
scattered profusely upon his upper lip and breast. Upon 
his becoming aware of my presence he turned quickly towards 
me, and saluted me with a courteous smile, evidently en- 
deavouring to conceal his anxiety and agitation by an assumed 
placidity of manner." 

Napoleon paid many compliments to Wellington, and to 
the British Army, and said : " Your nation is the greatest 
of them all. I esteem it more than all the others. I have 
been your greatest enemy, frankly such, but I am so no 
longer. I wished also to raise the French nation, but 
my plans have not succeeded. It is fate." "Here," says 
Campbell, "he stopped short, seeming greatly affected, and 





























the tears were in his e^'es." He then asked to be allowed 
to make the sea voyage on a British man-of-war. The 
British, alone, had never given in to him, and it was to their 
representative that he now turned for protection. He elosed 
the interview by saying : "I am at your disposal. I am your 
subject, I depend entirely on you."^ 

On the 18th, Campbell having obtained permission from 
Castlereagh to make use of a British man-of-war for 
Napoleon's voyage to Elba, Napoleon made further diffi- 
culties. He wished to change his route, which had been 
arranged by way of Auxerre, Lyons, Grenoble, Gap, and 
Digne, to the road of Briare, Lyons, Valence, Avignon, on the 
ground that his Guard had already marched to Briare, and that 
his carriage was directed there from Orleans, and that the 
new route had not been the seat of war. Caulaincourt, who 
was taking his leave of Napoleon, was directed by him to 
deliver this message to the Allied Sovereigns or their repre- 
sentatives in Paris ; and to add that if his wishes were not 
deferred to Napoleon would throw himself into the arms of 
the English. " That is a great nation," he repeated once more 
to his followers. " I am convinced that I should be in safety 
in England, and would be treated with magnanimity." 
However, permission to make the change of route was 

Napoleon then proceeded to insist that before starting 
he should be given a copy of the order sent by the French 
Government to the Commandant at Elba, with regard to his 
reception. This accordingly was obtained from Paris in the 
course of the day. It ran as follows : — 

" Paris, the 18//? April, 1814. 
" I am sending you, Commandant, an order according to 
which you will deliver over to Napoleon Bonaparte, former 
Emperor of the French, the Island of Elba, when he dis- 
embarks on the island. This arrangement is in conformity 
■ Campbell, p. 157. 


with the intentions of the AlHed Powers, and nothing must 
oppose its execution. The troops which are in the Island of 
Elba, and all the stores belonging to France, must be removed, 
and an act must be drawn up declaring the delivery of the 
island to Napoleon. 

" I have the honour, etc., 
" The Commissioner to the Department of War, 

" General Count Dupont." 

" To the Commandant -in-Chief of the Island of Elba. 

" Paris, 18th April, 1814. 

" Monsieur, brother of the King, Lieutenant-General of 
the Kingdom, orders the Island of Elba to be given up to 
Napoleon Bonaparte, former Emperor of the French, on his 
arrival in that island. 

" By order of Monsieur, Lieutenant-General of the 
Kingdom, etc. etc. 

" The Commissioner to the Department of War, 

" General Count Dupont." 

It will be observed that within seven days of the Treaty of 
Fontainebleau the French Government had repudiated the 
clause by which Napoleon was to be given the title of 

19th April.- — Napoleon now declared that he would not 
leave Fontainebleau unless the Powers guaranteed that 
the guns and military stores would be left for his use. Major 
Clam was accordingly sent to Paris with this request, but 
without waiting for his return the 20th April was definitely 
fixed as the day of departure. Napoleon being assured by 
General Koller that Clam would soon catch them up with the 
required instructions, as, in fact, he did, on the 21st. 

20th April. — At ten a.m. the carriages were drawn up in 
the Court of Fontainebleau Palace, ready for the journey, 


when Napoleon sent for General Koller, and told him that he 
had decided not to depart. He said that as the Allies had 
not remained faithful to their engagements, he was entitled 
to revoke his abdication, which had always been only con- 
ditional. On Koller's enquiry in what respect the Allies had 
broken the Treaty of Fontainebleau, Napoleon said that it 
had been agreed that the Empress was to go with him 
(alluding to Article 14, which promised passports for his 
family). Koller replied that Marie Louise of her own free 
will had decided not to accompany him. 

When Koller observed that peace on good terms might have 
been obtained at Prague in 1813 Napoleon was silent for a 
moment ; then he said : " Well, at that time, I lulled myself 
with dreams.^ Is it not permitted to dream sometimes ? 
I have now quite recovered. I must admit that I was mis- 
taken in my opinion of my opponents ; I thought you were 
still the men I had known on earlier occasions, and you had 
changed, to your advantage, in the meantime." 

He then said he considered Austria to be in a dangerous 
position, through her alliance with Russia and Prussia, 
whereas France was her natural ally. When Koller replied 
that immediate dangers were always looked at more closely 
than distant anxieties. Napoleon remarked : "I esteem you 
for the freedom of your words ; if you speak with equal 
candour to your Sovereign, I must regard you as a priceless 
servant. I was not so fortunate as to possess any such." 

An Adjutant now entered to announce that the Grand 
Marshal Bertrand desired him to observe that it was already 
eleven o'clock, to which Napoleon sharply replied : " Since 
when have I been obliged to regulate my movements accord- 
ing to the Grand Marshal's clock ? I shall depart when I 
please, and perhaps not at all." He then continued the 

' " Ich habe micli in Traumen gewlegt," reports Koller. Truchsess- 
Waldburg and Campbell both give versions of what passed at the interview, 
from what Koller told them. Campbell makes Napoleon exclaim, " But it 
is all like a dream." 


conversation, speaking with emotion of the cruel separation 
from his wife and child — the tears rolling down his cheeks.^ 

He asked Koller what he should do if he was not welcomed 
at Elba. Koller suggested his seeking an asylum in England. 
" That is what I have thought also, but perhaps the English 
might feel some hostility towards me."^ "Sire," replied 
Koller, "as you have never made war in that country 
reconciliation would be all the easier." 

Napoleon then sent for Campbell and asked him what he 
thought about England as a possible refuge. " Sire,"^ said 
Campbell, " I think that the Sovereign and the nation would 
always act with generosity and be faithful to their engage- 
ments." " Yes," said Napoleon, " I am sure that I would 
not be refused an asylum there." 

Napoleon then sent for the Russian Commissioner, whom 
he dismissed almost at once, and he was equally cold and 
curt to the Prussian, who came last. 

Then ensued the famous farewell to the Old Guard. 
Napoleon descended the stairs into the great court of the 
Palace, where the carriages and two ranks of the Old Guard 
had been waiting all the morning. He sent for the Com- 
missioners to be present, assembled the officers around him, 
and addressed them as follows* : — 

" Officers, non-commissioned officers, and soldiers of the 
Old Guard ! I bid you farewell. For twenty years I have 
found you brave and faithful, marching in the path of glory. 
The Allied Powers have armed all Europe against us. The 
enemy, by stealing three marches upon me, entered Paris. 
I was marching to drive them out. They would not have 

» Campbell, p. 101. 

2 Trnchsess-Waldbur^, " Napoleon Buonaparte's Reise/' p. 16. 

•'' Thoug-li Campbell abstained from conferring upon Napoleon tlie title of 
Emperor, he addressed liim as a Sovereign. 

■* Campltell's report, wliicli be says is, " As nearly as I could recollect the 
words, in conjunction witli the other Connnissioners," is here relied ujjon, 
with some slight additions from Truchsess-W'aldburg or Koller. The Com- 
missioners had agreed to supply each other with such information as came 
their waj', and discussed with each other on the journey the exact phrases 
used by Napoleon. Tliere are other versions. 

> E 


remained three days. I thank you for the noble spirit you 
showed under these circumstances. But a part of the army 
abandoned me and went over to the enemy. From that 
moment a prompt dehverance of the capital had become 
impossible. I might, with three-fourths of the army still 
faithful to me, and with the consent and support of the 
great majority of the population, have directed myself 
upon the Loire, or upon the fortresses, and kept up the war 
for several years. But foreign and civil war would have 
devastated our beautiful country, and at the cost of such 
sacrifices and ravages could we hope to conquer united 
Europe, supported by the influence of the City of Paris, 
which a faction had succeeded in dominating ? 

" Under these circumstances I have considered only the 
welfare of France. I hav^e made the sacrifice of all my rights, 
and am ready to make that of my person, for all my life has 
been devoted to the happiness and the glory of France. 

" Soldiers ! serve faithfully your new Sovereign. The 
sweetest occupation of my life will be henceforth to make 
known to posterity all the great deeds you have done, and my 
only consolation will be to learn what France will be doing 
for the glory of her name. 

" You are all my children. I cannot embrace you all, but 
I shall be embracing all in the person of your General. Come, 
General." (He embraced General Petit, and kissed him on 
both cheeks.) " Bring me the eagles which have served us 
as guides through so many perils and such days of glory." 
He silently embraced the flag for fully half a minute ; then, 
lifting up his hand, he said : " Farewell ! My good wishes 
will always be with you ! Keep me in your memory ! " 

Napoleon spoke with such dignity and was himself so 
visibly affected that nearly all about him, including even 
the foreign Commissioners, were in tears ; those nearest 
kissed his hands, his coat, any piece of his clothing. Even 
Campbell was overcome ; when he had recovered he said, 
" That was indeed a most moving scene, and worthy of the 


great man who created it." Even now after a hundred 
years the bare recital helps us to understand the magic and 
the power of Napoleon. 

The Guards came up to Koller, whose bearing had been 
most sympathetic, and begged him to watch over their 
beloved Emperor ; they would be for ever grateful. Then the 
carriages drove off. 

When on the road the order was as follows : — 

A dozen Cavalry of the Guard. 

A carriage containing General Drouot and other officers. 

A dormeuse de voyage, with Napoleon and Bert rand. 

Fifty Cavalry of the Guard. 

The carriage of General Koller. 

The carriage of General Schouvaloff. 

The carriage of Colonel Campbell. 

The carriage of Count Truchsess-Waldburg. 

The carriage of Schouvaloff's Adjutant, Olewieff. 

Eight carriages with Napoleon's household. 

The fifteen carriages required a total of sixty horses. 

During the first two days of the journey, as long as his 
Guard was with him, Napoleon was received with cries of 
" Vive VEmpereur ! " and the Commissioners were roundly 
abused. How far all this was genuine is not sure, for the 
officers of the Guard always went ahead and prepared the 
people for the part that was expected of them. Campbell 
heard the soldiers who were met on the route receiving the 
order, " Criez Vive VEmpereur.'''' 

Passing through Nemours and Montargis, they reached 
Briare at 8.30 p.m., and stopped there the night. 

At Briare they found the companies of the infantry of the 
Old Guard who were on their way to Elba. They left Napoleon 
at Briare, marching by way of Auxerre and Mont Cenis, 
to take ship at Savona. They had with them a quantity 
of Napoleon's baggage, and the Imperial state coach, which 
was far too cumbersome to be used on the roads of Elba, 
but Napoleon wanted all his Imperial trappings about him. 


21st April. — Napoleon invited Campbell to breakfast with 
him, and was as usual very complimentary to him and his 
nation. The journey was continued at noon and Nevers 
reached in the evening. 

So far Napoleon had been in fair spirits, and had even 
made jokes about his situation. Truchsess-Waldburg says 
that, speaking to the Commissioners, " He very candidly 
traced the different steps of his career for the last twenty-five 
years, adding that in balancing the account he was not 
a loser, for he began the game with a six-franc piece in his 
pocket, and now emerged very rich." 

In the early part of the journey Napoleon sent for the Mayor 
or Prefect of the towns through which he passed, and enquired 
of them, as if he were still Emperor, as to the condition of the 
people ; but he gave that up when, as he advanced southward, 
the officials, one after the other, had the hardihood to tell 
him that the miserable state of the country was due to the 
war and the conscriptions. 

22nd April. — A start was made at 6 a.m. The cavalry of 
the Guard went as far as Villeneuve and then turned back. 
Napoleon declined the Cossack and Austrian escort that 
was waiting, declaring that he had no need of foreign pro- 
tection. "To go through France," he said, " I require 
neither my Guard nor the protection of foreigners ; all that 
I require is a British representative so that I may be quite 
at ease as to the voyage in the Mediterranean." ^ 

He was undeceived at once. At Moulins, where dinner 
was to have been taken, a large crowd was assembled of 
persons wearing white cockades and crying " Vive le RoiJ' 
Napoleon hurried on and did not halt until, after midnight, 
Roanne was reached. Here a detachment of Austrian troops 
provided the necessary shelter. From the moment the Guard 
left him there was a complete change in the reception of 

At Roanne they were near Pradines, where Cardinal 
1 " L'ile d'Elbe et les Cent Jours/' Correspondauce, Vol. 31, p. 2. 


Fesch and his half-sister, Letizia, the mother of Napoleon, 
were at the time residing, in a religious house founded by 
Fesch. Messages passed between Napoleon and his relations, 
but no meeting took place. 

23rd April. — Napoleon asked Campbell to go on in front 
and give orders for a British man-of-war from Marseilles or 
Toulon to be at the point of embarkation for his use. He 
said plainly that he feared insult on a French ship. Campbell 
accordingly hurried on. 

Leaving Roanne at 9 a.m., Napoleon arrived at Lyons 
in the night but went on without stopping. A considerable 
body of Austrian troops had been brought into the town ; 
some of them were kept up to accord Napoleon his Imperial 
honours. There were also a few cries of " Vive VEmpereur'' 
from groups of French citizens, mingled with other cries of 
" Vive le Roi ! A has Napoleon ! " 

24th April. — About midday Campbell met Augereau, 
who was travelling to Paris, having left his soldiers at Valence. 
The Due de Castiglione was not too pleased to hear that he 
was about to encounter his former comrade and master. He 
had but recently in a proclamation to his troops, of the ICth 
April, described Napoleon as " a man who after sacrificing 
millions of victims to his cruel ambition, had not the heart to 
die like a soldier." The interview promised to be stormy, 
for Augereau told Campbell he should speak his mind plainly. 
" He is a coward, I always thought so. He ought to have 
marched up to the cannon and thus ended his existence." 
Soon afterwards the meeting took place, on the high road. 
Having both alighted from their carriages. Napoleon took 
off his hat. Augereau touched his. Napoleon then embraced 
Augereau. They walked together for some minutes, followed 
by their attendants at a respectful distance. The conversa- 
tion was not overheard, but it was understood that it was 
temperate on the part of Napoleon and heated on that of the 
Marshal, who upbraided the Emperor for having sacrificed 
the welfare of France to his insatiable ambition. Napoleon 

O H 


brought the meeting to a close by embracing Augereau once 
more and taking off his hat, to which the only response was, 
as before, a careless touch of the cap. When his carriage was 
passing the Commissioners Augereau saluted them with 
great punctiliousness. The Marshal's boorish behaviour, 
loud tone, and rough gestures, were among the credentials 
that had brought him to the front in the unkempt period of 
the Revolution. Napoleon's superior education was precisely 
what had raised him above such barbarians. At Valence, 
Augereau's troops, in spite of the Marshal's proclamation, 
and though compelled to wear the white cockade, greeted 
the Emperor with enthusiasm. 

At 6.30 p.m. a rest was taken at Montelimar for dinner. 
The sub-prefect gave disquieting news as to the reception 
that awaited the fallen man further on, especially at Avignon. 
It was rumoured that the Provisional Government had sent 
agents forward to incite the people against him. The Mau- 
breuil revelations, in which Talleyrand was afterwards 
implicated, prove that this had actually been done. 

Some of Napoleon's carriages had preceded him, and had 
been already surrounded by an angry mob, at Avignon, where 
the grooms had found it necessary to adopt the white cockade, 
and to shout " Vive le Roi ! " before they were allowed to 
continue on their way. A messenger was therefore sent for- 
ward to Avignon to collect any gendarmes or national guards 
who might be available. 

25th April. — Going on again through the night, Napoleon 
found, at every stopping-place, the houses lighted and the 
populace waiting up, to greet him with cries of " yi bas le 
tijran ! A has Nicolas! Vive le Roi!'' A rumour had 
got about that his baptismal name was Nicholas. At 
3 a.m. he passed Orange, and even at that hour there were 
people about waiting to insult and if possible maltreat him. 
However, they hurried on, and at 6 a.m. arrived outside 
Avignon. The inhabitants had congregated by the post- 
horses which were in readiness. When the Emperor's carriage 



arrived it was surrounded by a mob, stones were thrown, 
and one ruffian aimed a blow at the coachman with a 
sword. Happily, no blood was shed, the improvised escort 
proving sufficient to keep off the people while the horses 
were being quickly changed ; they were started off at a 
gallop, and were driven round the outskirts of the town. 

Worse was to follow at Orgon, reached about noon. Just 
where the post-horses were waiting a gallows had been 
erected and an effigy of Napoleon hung up, blood and dirt 
upon it, with a paper on which was written : " Tel sera tot ou 
tard le sort du Tyran " (" Such will be sooner or later the fate 
of the Tyrant "). Napoleon, pale and terrified, tried to hide 
behind Bertrand in a corner of his carriage. The Com- 
missioners, Roller, Schouvaloff, and Truchsess-Waldburg, 
with their attendants, and Napoleon's people, placed them- 
selves in front of the carriage. Schouvaloff harangued the 
crowd, telling them they ought to be ashamed to insult the 
fallen. Only contempt should be felt for a man who had 
hoped to govern the world and was now in need of their 
generosity. It was unworthy of the French nation to take 
any other vengeance. This speech had some effect, and 
finally the crowd was induced to move away from the wheels 
of the carriage, which was at once started off at a great pace. 

About a mile beyond the town Napoleon covered himself 
up with a plain blue overcoat, and put on a common round 
hat, with a white cockade. Thus disguised as a courier he 
rode on horseback in advance, accompanied by one of the 
outriders. When his carriage arrived at the next stopping- 
place, which he had already successfully passed, the mob 
attempted to break into it, and Bertrand, who was seated 
inside, might have been roughly handled if the Commissioners 
and their attendants had failed to keep off the furious people. 

The Commissioners overtook Napoleon at Calade, in a 
miserable little inn by the roadside, where they found him 
sitting in a small room, his head supported on his arms, his 
face bathed in tears. On his arrival the landlady had asked 


him whether he had seen Bonaparte, to which he repHed in 
the negative, whereupon she burst into a torrent of abuse of 
him. " I am curious to see," she said, " whether he will 
succeed in escaping ; I think the people will murder him, 
and it must be admitted that the scoundrel deserves it." 
Napoleon said afterwards that the woman had prophesied 
that when he was on the ship he would be thrown into the 
sea.i He appears to have feared the French ship from the 
very first. After the return from Elba this inn was pillaged 
by the soldiers, and the landlady had to leave the district. 

To conceal his identity Napoleon wished to call himself 
Colonel Campbell, but, on being reminded that Campbell 
had already passed that way, he chose the name of Lord 
Burghersh, who had originally been selected to act as British 
Commissioner, but had declined on hearing that he would 
have to remain on the Island of Elba. Napoleon seemed to 
believe that his safety depended upon the British name. 

" Here," says Truchsess-Waldburg, " we dined, but as 
the dinner had not been prepared by his own cooks, Napoleon 
had not the courage to partake of it, for fear of being poisoned. 
He felt ashamed, however, at seeing us all eat, both with good 
appetites and good consciences, and therefore helped himself 
from every dish, but without swallowing the least morsel ; 
he spat everything out upon his plate or behind his chair. 
A little bread, and a bottle of wine taken from his carriage, 
and which he divided with us, constituted his whole repast. 
He even begged us to look around and see if we could not 
anywhere discover a private door through which he might 
slip out, or if the window, whose shutters upon entering he 
had half-closed at the bottom, was too high for him to jump 
out of in case of need. On examination I found the window 
on the outside was provided with an iron trellis-work, and 
threw him into evident consternation as I communicated the 
discovery. At the least noise he started up in terror and 
changed colour. After dinner we left him alone, and, as we 

^ " L'ile d'Elbe et les Cent Jours," Correspondance, Vol. 31, p. 8. 


went in and out, found him frequently weeping. His polite- 
ness towards us went so far as to make a bowl of cold punch 
for us ; he rolled up his mantle in the form of a cushion on the 
sofa and pressingly begged General Koller to repose himself 
on it, since he must be fatigued from the heat of the day." 

This account is corroborated by Koller, who in his report 
to Metternich says : " It would be tedious to describe to your 
Serene Highness the strange and trying hours that we 
passed at the inn, when the Emperor was overcome with 
anxiety, thought of nothing but the means to be adopted for 
his safety, the disguise he should adopt, etc." Clam wrote : 
" He allowed himself to be completely overmastered by his 
fears. He was white and disfigured, his voice was broken, 
he could not manage to appear calm even before the domes- 
tics " ; and so on. 

26th April. — After much discussion new disguises were at 
length agreed upon. Napoleon put on the Austrian uniform 
of Koller, the Prussian forage cap of Truchsess-Waldburg, and 
the Russian cloak of Schouvaloff. The Austrian coat used 
on this occasion is still in the possession of the Koller family, 
and has never been worn since Napoleon hid under it. It 
is of the traditional light blue still retained in the Austrian 
army, with a red somewhat brighter than that of to-day, 
heavy gold facings, and the white and red band of the order 
of Theresa. For further mystification Schouvaloff s Adjutant, 
Major Olewieff, was put forward in Napoleon's discarded 
costume of courier, to impersonate the Emperor. He was 
disguised as Napoleon in disguise, while the genuine article 
was hidden under an incongruous collection of allied offerings.^ 

Soon after midnight the party walked to the carriages in an 
order which had been previously arranged. Drouot led ; then 
came the Adjutant in the Emperor's place ; Koller ; 
Napoleon, in a costume which defied analysis ; Schouvaloff ; 
and finally Truchsess-Waldburg. These complicated sub- 
terfuges quite mystified the waiting mob. They allowed the 

1 Truchsess-Waldburg, 40 ; Helfert, 41, 63. 


Russian Adjutant to seat himself unmolested in Napoleon's 
grand equipage, and in the meantime Napoleon safely reached 
the Austrian carriage, where he sat trembling, in the shadow 
of General Roller. He insisted that the servant on the box 
should smoke, in order to make it abundantly plain that no 
Emperor could be in the carriage. With the same object he 
asked Roller to sing, and when the Austrian General declared he 
had no voice, said at least he should whistle : "And with this 
singular music," says Truchsess-Waldburg, " we made our 
entry into every place ; whilst the Emperor, fumigated with 
the incense of the tobacco-pipe, pressed himself into the 
corner of the carriage and pretended to be fast asleep. In 
the open road he renewed the conversation." 

Passing in this manner through Aix, Saint Maximin, and 
other small towns, greeted everywhere, no matter how late 
the hour, with cries of " ^ has le tyran ! A has Nicolas ! 
Vive Louis XVIII ! " but without the offer of any violence, 
they reached Luc in the afternoon. Here they found two 
squadrons of Austrian Hussars, whom Roller ordered to 
act as escort. All danger was now over. 

To General Roller Napoleon afterwards observed : "I 
have shown you myself quite naked." Campbell says : " It 
was evident during his stay at Fontainebleau and the follow- 
ing journey, that he entertained great apprehensions of 
attacks upon his life, and he certainly exhibited more 
timidity than one would have expected from a man of his 

Napoleon had a great dread of the mob. He had seen the 
canaille at their terrible work in the streets of Paris during the 
Revolution. The prospect of being torn to pieces by enraged 
savages would appal the bravest soldier, but the reputation 
of Napoleon would stand higher if he had been able to show a 
little dignity and self-control. His refusal to touch the 
food which others were contentedly eating, the depths of 
cowardly collapse to which he sank, made a very bad im- 

> Campbell, p. 200. 


pression on all who were present. Would Caesar or Charle- 
magne, with whom he had compared himself, have exhibited 
such poltroonery ? Any common King, Louis XVI for 
example, would have put him to shame. 

He had experienced terrible calamities, and was naturally 
enough prostrated. But when he had recovered, he saw 
what must have been the effect upon public opinion. He 
declared that the Prussian Commissioner's pamphlet describ- 
ing these events, which was published in the spring of 1815, 
had done him more harm than any other publication ever 
issued against him. Indeed, there is reason to believe that 
the desire to recover his self-respect, by an exhibition of that 
personal courage which, at least amongst soldiers and in the 
early part of his career, he had certainly possessed, was not the 
least powerful of the motives that led him to return from Elba. 

At Luc, at the Chateau de Bouilledou, Pauline was staying. 
Napoleon went at once to visit his favourite sister, who was 
horrified to see him in his strange uniforms, which he had 
not yet changed. Pauline was in poor health ; though 
unable to travel with Napoleon she said she would join him 
at Elba. He stopped at the chateau for the night. 

27th April. — Napoleon left Luc early, escorted by the 
Austrian Hussars, once more in his own carriage, and wearing 
his own clothes, and arrived at Frejus at 10 a.m. 

Meanwhile Campbell had reached Marseilles on the evening 
of the 25th, where he found H.M. frigate Undaunted, Captain 
Ussher. Campbell at once sent him his instructions, and the 
Undaunted sailed next morning for St. Tropez, where the 
French frigate Dryade, commanded by Comte de Montcabrie, 
awaited Napoleon's arrival. Campbell had already arrived 
at Frejus, and had sent thence to St. Tropez informing Ussher 
that at Napoleon's request the place of embarkation had 
been changed to Frejus. The British and French ships 
accordingly sailed for Frejus, but Napoleon told de Montcabrie 
that he intended to travel on the British ship. The Dryade 
accordingly returned to Toulon. 


Napoleon's disinclination for a voyage on a French ship 
carrying the Bourbon colours, is easy to understand ; and 
even if Montcabrie had hauled down the white flag, as he said 
he was prepared to do, the Emperor would still have had 
grounds for considerable apprehension as to the courtesy of 
his reception, and even the safety of his person. 

Napoleon invited the four Commissioners and Captain 
Ussher to dine with him at the inn. He was once more the 
Emperor. Koller says that his manner was now so Imperial 
that they almost imagined that they still had before them 
the ruler of Europe. Clam thought this arrogant tone was 
intended to drive away recollection of the scenes on the 

28th April. — Captain Ussher, who was sleeping on shore, was 
awakened in the early morning by two of the inhabitants 
who begged him to get Napoleon away immediately, as they 
heard that the soldiers of the Army of Italy were entering 
France and declaring their devotion to the Emperor. It had 
been precisely in order to meet these enthusiastic adherents 
that Napoleon had at Fontainebleau endeavoured to obtain 
a change of route through Italy to Piombino. Ussher 
had no authority over Napoleon, he could merely threaten, 
as he did, that if the wind were to change, which the weather 
indications led him to expect within a few hours, he would 
have to put out to sea for the safety of the ship, leaving 
Napoleon on the inhospitable coast. Under this pressure 
the Emperor consented to embark that day, but begged a 
postponement until the evening on account of a sudden 
indisposition. He shrank from leaving France in the broad 
light of day. 

Before embarking Napoleon wrote again to Marie Louise, 
and took the opportunity to remark that Pauline had 
expressed her determination to join him at Elba, when her 
health was restored. Bertrand wrote to Meneval expressing 
the hope that the Empress would divide her time between 
Parma and Elba. 


Napoleon also wrote to the Emperor Francis : — 

" My brother, and very dear father-in-law. I have re- 
ceived Your Majesty's letter. The desire of the Empress 
and of myself is to be reunited, above all at a time when 
fortune has been pleased to make us feel all its rigours. 
Your Majesty is of the opinion that the Empress requires 
to take the waters, and that immediately afterwards she will 
come to Italy. This is for me a pleasant prospect, and I 
count upon it. I have been pleased on the journey with 
General Roller and Major Clam. I recommend the excellent 
Empress and my son to Your Majesty. I beg Your Majesty 
to accept all the feelings of esteem and of high consideration 
that I entertain towards him. 

" At Frejus, 28th April, 1814. 

" Napoleon." 

He says now that he and the Empress wish to be together, 
but there i-s no actual request for the presence of his wife 
at Elba. He hopes " that she will come to Italy " — where 
perhaps they may meet. 

In the evening Ussher came for him, and was with him 
in his room at the inn, when, a noise being heard outside, 
the Englishman remarked that a French mob was the worst 
of all mobs, to which Napoleon replied : " Yes, they are a 
fickle people. They are like a weathercock." 

The doors were thrown open, and the Emperor passed down 
through a lane of people, some of the ladies in full dress, 
and all bowed respectfully. He went straight up to one of 
the prettiest of the ladies, asked her whether she was married, 
then how many children she had, and without waiting to hear 
the exact number, he hurried forward to his carriage, which 
went off at a great pace for the harbour of St. Raphael. It 
was upon the same shore that he had been rapturously 
welcomed as the saviour of France, on his return from 
Egypt in 1799. 

< 5 


A bright moon shone on the assembled crowd, and upon 
the cavah-y drawn up in Hne under the trees ; it lighted up 
Napoleon's pale features, and glittered upon the beach, 
where were the British boats, with their officers and sailors, 
prepared to carry their guest safely across the sea to his 
island refuge. 



WHEN the barge of H.M.S. UndauntedhsidYe&ched 
the ship, in the night of the 28th-29th April, 
Captain Ussher hastened up the side to receive 
Napoleon on the quarter-deck. As he stepped 
for the first time on a British warship he was given a royal 
salute of twenty-one guns ; he took off his hat, bowed to the 
officers who had been collected to receive him, and then went 
forward to the forecastle, where he remained for some time 
talking to the sailors, some of whom had been long enough on 
the station to pick up a little French. 

There had been some discussion as to the salute. Camp- 
bell's instructions were that he was to conduct himself, " as 
far as circumstances will permit, with every proper respect 
and attention to Napoleon." He and Ussher had to decide 
for themselves what that meant. They carefully avoided, 
of course, all use of the term " Emperor." They also declined 
to uncover in the presence of Napoleon, but Campbell, at 
least, addressed him as " Sire," which was inconsistent. 
They attempted to avoid decision in the matter of the royal 
salute by informing Napoleon that " it was not customary to 
salute after sunset, in the hope," says Campbell, " that he 
would dispense with the compliment, but this he decidedly 
objected to, and desired General Drouot to say he would 
postpone the embarkation till the following morning, as, on 
account of the impression it would make on the inhabitants, 
he particularly wished to be received with a royal salute. 



As it was very important that there should be no unnecessary 
delay in Napoleon's reaching his new sovereignty, I urged 
Captain Ussher strongly to waive on this occasion the usual 
etiquette ; and in consequence Napoleon was persuaded to 
embark on the day originally fixed, and was received with 
the honours he so much valued."^ 

Lord Castlereagh recognised Napoleon's " sovereignty of 
the Island of Elba." Ussher and Campbell were therefore 
obliged to give the Sovereign a royal salute, which was re- 
peated when Napoleon took possession of the island. These 
salutes were formal recognitions of his kingship, and to be con- 
sistent the British officers should have bared their heads. 
Doubtless they would have been instructed to do so if the 
Sovereign of Elba had made any complaint of discourtesy. 
It was supposed that the Congress of Vienna would deal 
with the subject and put an end to the anomalies of the 

Neil Campbell was the son of Neil Campbell of Duntroon, 
who belonged to a younger branch of the house of Argyll. He 
entered the army in 1797, and saw service in the West Indies 
as ensign of the 67th. Returning to England, he published a 
small book " Instructions for Light Infantry and Riflemen," 
which was for some time the standard work. From 1800 to 
1810 he served with distinction in the West Indies again. 
In 1811 he was in the Peninsula as Colonel of the 16th Regi- 
ment of Portuguese Infantry, and took his regiment to the 
sieges of Ciudad Rodrigo, Badajos, and Burgos, and the battle 
of Salamanca. 

In 1813 Colonel Campbell was placed on the staff of Lord 
Cathcart to accompany the Russian Army, and had as col- 
leagues, whose duty it was to send Lord Cathcart reports as 
to the various corps, Colonel Sir Robert Wilson and Colonel 
Hudson Lowe. 

On his way to join Lord Cathcart, Campbell had at 
Stockholm several interesting discussions with Bernadotte, 

» Campbell, p. 199. 


the Crown Prince of Sweden, and he was also received with 
favour by Madame de Stael. On the 5th April, 1813, he 
arrived at Kalisch, the headquarters of the Czar, where he 
met Colonel Hudson Lowe. At Dresden he was introduced to 
the Czar and the King of Prussia. Campbell was present, 
with Sir Robert Wilson, at the battles of Liitzen and Bautzen. 
He wrote of the allied troops : " The Russians have the 
finest materials of men I have ever seen, but ignorant officers, 
a great want of arrangement, and much of the Eastern loose 
mode of baggage and folloAvers. The Prussians are perfect 
in everything. They have made glorious efforts, and I trust 
they will not be deserted now, as they were at Tilsit." 

Campbell was sent in August to join the Russian head- 
quarters at the siege of Danzig, and remained on that tedious 
duty till the fall of the town at the end of November. He 
then went to Berlin, where he dined with the Princess of 
Orange, and spent an evening at the house of the Princess 
Louise, sister of the King of Prussia. " We sat round a large 
table and had tea, which was made by one of the ladies of 
the household, and handed about by one of the servants, 
just in the ssune family style as in England. After this a large 
dish of omelette was placed before the same lady, and a 
plate of it, with a spoon, was delivered to each. Then a dish 
with pudding was served out in the same way. No cloth was 
laid, and each held the plate, like a cup of tea, in the hand. 
The conversation went on with great spirit, for the Princess 
Louise is uncommonly clever and lively. The ladies were 
employed in picking lint from old linen for the wounded. 
This is a constant occupation in all families, and generally 
a requisition for a certain quantity, according to the number 
in the families, is made by the magistrates." 

Campbell was attached to the allied forces on their march 
to Paris ; at one time he was with the Russians, at another 
with the Prussians. Hudson Lowe was throughout with 
Bliicher. Campbell also was with Bliicher at Brienne, fought 
on the 29th January, 1814, and he was present in a number of 


subsequent engagements until, on March 25th, at the battle 
of Fere Champenoise, he was nearly killed by Cossacks, who 
took him for a French officer. A lance was thrust into his 
back, and when on the ground he received a severe cut on 
the head, and would have been killed by a third attack 
but for the intervention of a Russian officer. There was 
little quarter given on either side in the campaign of 

The wounds at first seemed dangerous, but Campbell 
was well enough to be able to move to Paris on the 9th April. 
On the 15th, although still in the opinion of the surgeon 
unfit to travel, he received and accepted the duty of accom- 
panying Napoleon to Elba. 

Campbell was summoned on his return from the island in 
1815 to a private interview with the Prince Regent, who 
entirely exonerated him from all blame for Napoleon's 

In 1826 Campbell, now a Major-General, was appointed 
Governor of Sierra Leone, at that time deservedly known as 
" the white man's grave." He went with alacrity, declaring 
that the climate was as good as that of the West Indies, but he 
was dead in little more than a year, on the 14th August, 1827. 

" The Times " said of him that he was a most intrepid 
and zealous officer, and a gentleman of kind and excellent 
heart, which is a good description of his character. 

Thomas Ussher, born in Dublin in 1779, was the son 
of the Reverend Henry Ussher, a Senior Fellow of Trinity 
College, Dublin, and the first Astronomer Royal of Ireland. 
He entered the navy as midshipman, at the age of twelve. 
In 1790, in a boat engagement, he was severely wounded 
and taken prisoner. He was afterwards in many fights, and 
always showed zeal and spirit. In 1808, as post-captain, he 
was entertained at a public dinner at Dublin and received the 
freedom of the city. In 1813-4 he was in command of the 
Undaunted, frigate, stationed off Toulon. In June, 1815, he 
was made a C,B. ; in 1831 he was kniohted. A Rcar-Admhal 


in 1846, he was Commander-in-Chief at Queenstown in 1847, 
and died in 1848. 

One of the lieutenants on the Undaunted was William 
Sidney Smith, a nephew of Sir Sidney. 

Another lieutenant, Hastings, has left a record of his 
impressions in a letter, some extracts from which are now 
published for the first time^ : — 

" This mighty enemy of England prefer'd trusting himself 
in the hands of those very people whom he had so often 
stigmatised as being destitute of Honor and Principle, to 
those over whom he had reigned, and so often led to victory 
and glory. . . . The road was lined with Hussars, and a 
Square was formed on the Beach around the boat. At 
I past 8 he embarked in the utmost silence, which was only 
interrupted by a trumpet march. The sea was peaceably 
calm, and the whole scene was truly impressive. Deserted 
by all his Generals but two as well as by the greater part of 
his Domesticks ; and ever fearing for his own safety, He 
throws himself on board a Frigate belonging to that country, 
whose most deadly enmity he justly merited. There, he is 
received with all the Honors due to a Sovereign Prince which 
(to do him justice) He was fully alive to ; as He observed, 
' The English were indeed noble and generous Enemies.' It 
behoves me to say that the unbending fortitude with which 
he bears the reverse of circumstances does at least command 
respect, and could we divest ourselves of the Idea that the 
Murderer of a D'Enghien, a Wright, &c. &c. &c., stood 
before us, We might even rise into admiration. The same 
night we weighed and made sail. During a passage of six 
days. He assumed an affability which certainly did not appear 
natural to him. His height is 5 feet 5 inches, inclining to 
fatness which makes him appear inactive and unwieldy. His 
eyes are grey, extremely penetrating : the expression of his 
countenance by no means agreeable ; and his manners far 
from dignified or graceful." 

1 From Mr. Broadley's collection of Napoleonic MSS. 


The following persons were taken on the Undaunted with 
Napoleon : — 

General Roller, Austrian Commissioner. 

Major Clam, A.D.C. 

Colonel Campbell, British Commissioner. 

General Bertrand, Grand Marshal of the Palace. 

General Drouot, A.D.C. to the Emperor. 

Colonel Jersmanowski, in command of the Polish Lancers. 

Chevalier Peyrusse, Treasurer of the Crown. 

Chevalier Fourreau de Beauregard, physician. 

Chevalier Deschamps, First Groom of the Bedchamber. 

Chevalier Baillon, Second Groom of the Bedchamber. 

Gatti, apothecary. 

Colin, Controller of the Household. 

Rathery, Secretary to the Grand Marshal. 

There were twelve other officials and ten domestics. 

Napoleon slept in the after-cabin, which was given up to 
him entirely. He took his coffee very early and was some- 
times on deck by seven. Breakfast was served at ten and 
dinner at six. There were present at both meals with 
Napoleon, Koller, Campbell, Clam, Bertrand, Drouot, 
Ussher, and the officer of the watch. 

Napoleon throughout the voyage was in good spirits, and 
his suite, who had never known him save as the monarch 
before whom all men grovelled, or, recently, as the terrified 
fugitive, were surprised at the cordiality of his manner. He 
suffered no inconvenience from the movement of the ship, 
and declared he had never been in better health. 

The terrible load of ever-increasing anxiety was at last 
removed. Ever since the ]\Ioscow campaign his sufferings, 
the laceration of his sensitive pride, had been intense. The 
mortifying experiences of the journey through France were 
now succeeded by the repose and complete security on the 
British ship. He told Campbell that he had not felt safe 
until he stepped on to the deck of the Undaunted. If there 
was still some doubt as to the reception that awaited him at 


Elba, he had the British Commissioner and the British ship 
to fall back upon. At the worst he would demand an asylum 
in England. Josephine at Malmaison was at this time telling 
the Duke of Northumberland that the English were the only 
people generous enough to speak respectfully of the fallen 

The relief on finding himself in safe hands was so great 
that it carried Napoleon to the verge of garrulity and in- 
discretion. He surprised everybody by his appetite for small 
talk, with excursions into loose gossip. 

At table most of his conversation was with Campbell, who 
was directed to translate to Ussher what had been said, while 
the Emperor watched the two Englishmen with marked 
interest. He spoke much of his relations with England. 
He said that during the peace of Amiens he had proposed to 
Addington, the British Prime Minister, to enter into a treaty 
of commerce by which each country would have bound itself 
to take the same amount of goods from the other, so that if 
France bought so many millions worth of English goods, 
England would buy the same quantity of French goods. He 
also said that the Americans brought France their tobacco 
and cotton, and being paid for it in specie, then went to 
England and paid for English manufactures with the specie 
obtained from France. To prevent this injustice to France, 
he refused to admit American tobacco and cotton unless the 
Americans took from France an equivalent in French produce. 

Napoleon's ignorance of the principles of commerce and 
of the relations between coin and commodities was profound. 
If, instead of poring over Plutarch's " Lives," Rollin's 
"Ancient History," Marigny's " History of the Arabs," and 
such romantic tales, his youthful reading had been Smith's 
" Wealth of Nations," he might have avoided some of the 
mistakes in commercial policy which proved so disastrous* 

Napoleon also said that he still believed the greater part 
of France to be in his favour, and that the Bourbons would 
make themselves intolerable in six months ; and he allowed 


it to be seen that he had not abandoned the hope of a return 
to power some day. Campbell thought he revealed more 
than he intended of his expectations. 

He was speaking to Major Clam one day of the life he 
intended to live at Elba, how he would renew his mathe- 
matical studies, and so on : " You know I am exceptional 
in this, that I am fitted for an active and a sedentary life." 
" That," said Clam, " is because Your Majesty has a great 
deal of imagination." " Yes, indeed," replied Napoleon, " I 
sometimes have far too much." 

The voyage at first was rough, with strong head winds 
and a heavy sea. Shelter was sought off Calvi, on the coast 
of Corsica. It was from that port that Letizia Bonaparte 
and her children had sailed for France on the 11th June, 1793. 
Being of the French party, owing to the children having 
been sent to France for their education, the family was driven 
out of their native home when Paoli and Corsica broke 
away from the French Revolution. 

During the bad weather Napoleon was constantly on deck, 
while his suite were unable to leave their cabins. On one 
occasion when the ship was near the coast he proposed to 
Roller a walk on the shore to stretch their legs. Roller 
declined, whispering to Ussher that he knew him too well 
to trust him on such a trip. While not exactly a prisoner. 
Napoleon was under surveillance, in charge of the Austrian 
and English conductors, who were determined not to let him 
out of their sight. Nor had he freedom as to his communica- 
tions, for when they met H.M.S. Berwick with frigates and 
transports bound for Ajaccio, his correspondence was 
taken ashore in the form of open letters, and only after he 
had given a solemn assurance that they did not refer to public 
affairs but were of a strictly private nature. 

Napoleon was most anxious for news, and a small Genoese 
ship being met, her captain was brought on deck, and sent 
to converse with him. At the conclusion of their conversation 
the Italian sailor, who believed he had been speaking to the 


captain of the man-of-war, said to Ussher, " Your captain 
is the most extraordinary man I ever met ; he put all sorts 
of questions to me, and without giving me time to reply 
repeated the same questions to me rapidly a second time." 
When Napoleon was told of the complaint of his repeating 
questions, he said that it was the only way to get at the truth 
from such fellows. But the Emperor had acquired the habit, 
as part of his Imperial equipment, of asking questions of 
the greatest men of the day, without waiting for the reply. 
In the determination to be royal, he had lost touch not only 
with " these fellows," but with mankind itself. 

On another occasion, when they met a fishing-boat which 
would not come alongside, Napoleon proposed that it should 
be fired upon to compel it to approach, whereupon Ussher 
remarked that such action would denationalise the boat, 
according to the Milan decree ; at which Napoleon laughed 
and pinched his ear, saying : " Ah, Capitaine ! " Koller 
said to Campbell, aside, that he was so much accustomed 
to seize that he could not yet abandon his old tricks. 

When they were off the Italian coast, the weather being 
clear, they had a fine view of the mountains. Standing on 
the deck and leaning on Ussher's arm. Napoleon gazed at 
them steadily for a long time. Ussher at length reminded 
him that he had passed those mountains once before under 
very different circumstances, alluding to the first Italian 
campaign, in 1796, to which Napoleon replied that it was very 

During the voyage he was very inquisitive on all 
matters connected with the navigation and management of a 
ship. He asked numerous questions and occasionally showed 
that he had somehow acquired certain scraps of knowledge 
on the subject ; he explained, for instance, to Koller, " and 
that very well," says Ussher, " a very nice point of seaman- 
ship, viz. that of keeping a ship clear of her anchor in a tide- 

He spoke of his plans for enabling France to rival England 


at sea. He had caused the Elbe to be carefully sounded 
and found that great naval establishments could have been 
made near Hamburg, and wood easily obtained from Poland. 
He said that Antwerp was necessary for France, and that he 
never would consent to give it up, especially as he had sworn 
at his coronation not to allow France to be diminished. He 
said that he had intended to build as many as three hundred 
sail of the line. 

On the 3rd May they passed Capraia, and shaped their 
course directly for Elba, in a light air with full sail. Napoleon 
was so impatient that he asked Ussher whether if he were 
chasing an enemy he would set more sail, and Ussher remark- 
ing, after examination, that the starboard top-gallant stunsail 
was not carried. Napoleon begged him to have it set at once, 
which was accordingly done. As soon as land was in sight 
he went forward to the forecastle, whence he examined it 
with his glass. When the batteries gradually came in view, 
he was most anxious to discern what colours were flying. At 
length the white flag with the lily of the Bourbons was 
revealed. It had replaced the tricolour only two days before. 
If the Undaunted had not been delayed on her passage by 
bad weather, she would have arrived while the island was still 
Imperial. Ussher considered that in that case he would have 
been obliged to take Napoleon to the British Naval 
Commander-in-Chief, Sir Edward Pellew, at Genoa, " who 
would, no doubt, have ordered us to England." The history 
of the world might have been changed. 

The mind of Napoleon ran often on dates and anniversaries. 
He remarked that it was on the 3rd May, 1789, exactly a 
quarter of a century back, that the great procession of the 
States General took place. W^hile he was speaking Louis XVIII 
was riding in a carriage drawn by eight cream-coloured horses, 
in another procession, into the city of Paris. 



BETWEEN Corsica and Italy, in the Tuscan Archi- 
pelago, there lie, in a north and south direction, a 
number of small islands. On clear days they are all 
of them visible both from Corsica and from Italy. 
The furthest north is Gorgona, off Leghorn. When 
Napoleon was a lieutenant in an artillery regiment at Auxonne 
he employed some of his spare time in taking notes on the 
books he was reading, and occasionally wrote an original 
short story. In one of these he imagines an Englishman 
wrecked at Gorgona, where he comes across a Corsican who 
had chosen that island as a retreat from the tyranny of the 
French, who had conquered Corsica. Napoleon made his 
compatriot speak of the French as having the reputation of 
being " the enemies of free men," while the shipwrecked 
visitor was " one of those virtuous Englishmen who still 
protect our fugitive citizens " — an allusion to the sojourn of 
Paoli, the Corsican patriot, in England, where he was in 
receipt of a pension from the Government. Gorgona Napoleon 
described as " an escarped rock which may have a circum- 
ference of half a league." " There are few situations," wrote 
the youth of nineteen, " so picturesque as the position of this 
island, separated from any land by immense arms of sea, 
bordered by rocks, against which the waves dash with fury. 
It is sometimes the refuge of the pale sailor against the 
tempest, but more often Gorgona is for them merely the reef 
where many ships have often been wrecked." 



This passage can only have been written by one who 
had sailed near the island, and so confirms the statements 
of both Joseph and Napoleon that when they were taken to 
school their father travelled by way of Leghorn. In that case 
Napoleon's recollection must date from the age of nine. 

South of Gorgona is Capraia, a wild-looking, hilly island, 
as its name implies, the natural home of goats ; it is larger 
than Gorgona, and has not so desolate an appearance. Both 
islands maintain a small colony of fishermen, whose pic- 
turesque boats add to the strange semi-barbarian romance of 
these waters. To pass one of these vessels at the time when 
the fishermen are hauling in their trawl, hurrying forward and 
back along the small boat to take their turn at the line, singing 
together the while, the music passing over the sea till it 
gradually fades as the boat sails away, is an experience that 
lingers in the memory. 

The next island is Elba, a striking and effective mass of 

Further south is Pianosa, which strangely enough is 
quite fiat, for all the other islands and islets appear to have 
been thrust up from the sea by a violent upheaval. Pianosa 
was uncultivated at the time of Napoleon, but is now covered 
with olive trees. 

Still further south Monte Cristo, a barren rock, rises like 
a pyramid straight from the sea to a height of 2000 feet. 
There can be little doubt that it was Dumas' visit to Elba 
in search of Napoleonic memories, that gave him not only 
the name, but much of the conception of his story. The iron 
mines of Elba with their inexhaustible wealth, the illustrious 
prisoner, the weird romance of these islands, which had made 
such an impression on the youthful Napoleon, all contributed 
towards the creation of the famous tale. 

Elba, the largest of these islands, is only sixteen miles in 
greatest length, ten miles in greatest breadth, and some sixty 
in circumference — about the size of Malta. 

Elba is also the nearest to Italy, the strait which separates 


it from Piombino being not more than six miles across. This 
narrow Canale di Piombino is, however, a conduit for strong 
winds, and, being strewn with rocks and islets — Cerboh and 
Pahnajola are large enough to have had towers of defence 
erected upon them — the passage was, in the time of Napoleon, 
dangerous at night and not without risk in the daytime. 
Even now the small steamer which does the trip twice a day 
is often obliged by the heavy sea to make for Porto Vecchio, 
where the landing is not so difficult as at Piombino. Com- 
munication with the shore is made by means of rowboats, 
which toss about wildly and threaten at any moment to be 
swamped. The crossing takes only half an hour from shore 
to shore, but it is very trying to all except the most hardened 
sailors. When the shelter under the Elban hills has been 
reached the remainder of the voj^age of some forty minutes 
is less disagreeable. Elba will never be a popular resort 
until the terrors of the Canale have been mitigated by an 
improved harbour at Piombino and a larger steamer is 
emploj^ed. It is said that Paul Demidoff sold the Napoleonic 
Museum at San Martino, which he had inherited from his 
uncle, because, having arrived at Piombino, he had not the 
courage to venture upon the tempestuous waters, and could 
take no interest in a property he would never be able to visit. 

A hundred years ago the uncertainty of the passage made 
Leghorn the usual port of embarkation for visitors from the 
north, and Civita Vecchia for those coming from Rome and 
Naples. Many, even now, prefer the four hours from Leghorn 
to the discomforts of Piombino. 

Seen from the approach by sea, Elba is striking and 
romantic, the mountains seeming to rise as towering columns 
from the ocean. Considering the small base upon which they 
rest, they attain a considerable height. Monte Capanne, 
though not more than three miles distant in any direction 
from the sea, rises to a height of 3300 feet ; the summit of 
Monte Giove, 2800 feet, and Monte alia Quata, 2500 feet, 
are only one and two miles respectively from the sea. The 


island is covered with precipitous hills, containing granite 
and a fine white marble on the west, and valuable serpentine 
on the east ; and a large variety of ferruginous minerals 
is found. Monte Calamita, as its name implies, produces 
loadstone, asbestos, and other minerals. Some of the hills 
bear a scrubby growth, not unlike the maquis of Corsica, 
consisting of myrtle, box, tamarisk, and other odoriferous 
plants, while others are barren and rocky, their savage wild- 
ness contrasting with the valleys at their base, where the 
vine is cultivated from which an excellent wine is made. 
In the time of Napoleon the Elba vermouth and the aleatica 
wine were favourably known. But the Elban does not take 
advantage of such spaces of flat land as may be suitable for 
crops of grain. The island is still, as in the time of Napoleon, 
dependent on imports for its bread. 

The climate is most agreeable, the heat of the summer 
being tempered by sea breezes ; but the salt marshes, which 
have now been abolished, used to be unhealthy spots, and 
there was malaria on the coast. 

The animals found on the island have a tendency to be 
black, like those of Corsica, and the small game, chiefly quail, 
partridge, and pigeon, has an excellent flavour and fragrant 
odour, which is also the case in Corsica. 

The Elbans are a milder race than the terrible native of 
the larger, more secluded, and wilder island. They are 
fishermen and miners, agriculture and even the care of pas- 
tures being comparatively neglected. There are few cows, 
and milk is not always easy to obtain. Most of the vegetable 
supplies are imported from Italy. The Elban is an agreeable, 
soft-spoken man, but like the Corsican, he is not a hard 
worker. The quarrels and jealousies of families are bitter, 
but without the Corsican ferocity. 

The most valuable fish caught off the coast of Elba is the 
tunny, a large fish of the mackerel family, which attains a 
maximum length of nine feet and weight of 900 pounds, the 
average being about half that size. The tunnies come to the 


shore from May onwards, for the purpose of spawning, and 
are driven into nets stretehed to a great length near the shore. 
The fish exhaust and stun themselves by their mad leaps 
against each other or against the side of the boat or barge 
to which the net is drawn, and are then easily captured, 
but to lift such heavy fish into the barge single-handed 
requires great strength. A clear sky and smooth sea are 
desirable to reveal the movements of the fish. Napoleon, 
on the 27th June, 1814, went with a large suite to witness 
the drawing-in of the nets. He harpooned a fish and tried to 
land it, but had selected too large a one, which he found he 
was unable to lift into the boat. 

The chief fisheries were in the Gulf of Procchio, at Marciana. 
As much as 20,000 pounds weight would be taken in one day. 
The flesh when properly cooked has an agreeable flavour, 
though it is rather rich. It is preserved in oil or salt and 
exported. It was known as saltamentum sardicum to the 

The iron mines of Elba have been famous from the earliest 
times. Virgil has a line, " Insula inexhaustis chalybum 
generosa metallis." ^ The Romans thought the mines were in- 
exhaustible, and supposed that the ore was soon reproduced 
after being dug. The marks of the Roman tools were, in 
the time of Napoleon, still visible on the rocks. It is said 
now that the mines may be worked out in thirty years. 
They are on the east of the island, served by the hill town of 
Rio Alto, which had 1800 inhabitants in the time of Napoleon, 
and by a coast town of smaller size, Rio Marina. 

There are several examples of this naming of two villages 
by the name of coast and mountain, as Marciana Alta and 
Marciana Marina, Campo and Campo Marina. Each has 
its permanent residents, but the bulk of the population 
migrates from the Marina in the summer to escape the coast 
malaria, and returns in the winter. A similar custom prevails 
in Corsica ; in the summer the whole population leaves the 

1 ^Eueid, BookX, p. 174. 


fever-stricken east coast for the fresh air of the mountains. 
The village on the hill was also a refuge when pirates 
had landed on the coast. Only within quite recent years 
have Elbans and Corsicans learned to forget their fear of 

In the time of Napoleon the iron ore was sent to the 
Continent to be smelted. Four hundred men and a hundred 
horses or oxen were at work on the mines. The men formed 
a class of their own, with fixed wages and permanent employ- 
ment and pensions for their widows, and as a consequence 
they did as little work as possible. 

Of the salt marshes the most important were in the Bay of 
Portoferraio. Sea-water was run into pits and left to be dried 
by the sun, when the salt remained. The ill-health produced 
by these insalubrious spots caused a greater loss to the 
island than the salt was worth, but it was a Government 

Portoferraio, the capital, is beautifully situated on a narrow 
promontory which juts out well into the sea, from west to 
east, and has an arm projecting at right angles southwards 
from the eastern end. The whole of this promontory is 
sheltered by the Elban hills in every direction except the 
north ; and thus the natural harbour on its southern side 
is completely protected. In the sailing days a gale from the 
north or north-west would drive a vessel on to the beach if it 
was not well handled, before the turn could be made into the 
inner harbour. In all other weather the large and deep bay 
provided perfect shelter for a large fleet, and with the inner 
harbour furnished one of the most comfortable and com- 
modious havens in the whole of the Mediterranean. 

It was also very strong against attack. On the east the 
entrance to the bay was defended by Fort Stella, and by a 
continuous range of batteries on the arm projecting south, 
known as the Linguella. At the end of the Linguella, protect- 
ing the entrance to the inner harbour, was an octagonal tower 
of the Martello design. It is now shown to visitors as the 


dungeon in which a would-be regicide was immured — Passa- 
nante, who tried to kill King Humbert. 

On the western height is Fort Falcone, which has at its base 
a big ditch, cutting off the fort and whole town from the rest 
of the island. A drawbridge over the ditch provided the only 
access to the town from the land, and the fort itself was 
further guarded by a gate opening on to a tunnel about 
a hundred yards long, cut in the rock. Napoleon had to pass 
in his carriage through this before he could reach the 
country, unless he made a long detour to the Water Gate 
and along the quay. 

The landing-stage, to which vessels of moderate size are 
moored, is in the centre of the harbour, opposite the Water 
Gate. Above it the town rises in tier above tier. Inside the 
gate is the Piazza Cavour, which is merely a broad street, the 
only one in the town ; the other connections are by stone 
stairways, which remind one of Valetta, Malta. Beyond the 
Piazza Cavour is the square which was known in the time of 
Napoleon as the Piazza d'Armi, or Place d' Amies, where his 
soldiers were drilled every day. It is now laid out as a 
garden and would be occupied by nursemaids and perambula- 
tors if the Elbans could afford such luxuries. A band plays 
there sometimes. 

On one side of the square is the parish church, known as 
the cathedral, to which Napoleon was escorted on his formal 
entry into the town ; on the other side is the Palazzo Comun- 
dale, or town hall, where he endeavoured to find a refuge from 
the gaping crowd. There are six tablets with inscriptions 
on the front of the town hall, commemorating : 1, The vote 
of the 15th March, 1860, by which Tuscany became a part 
of united Italy ; 2, Guerrazzi, a poet of the Risorgimento ; 
3, Victor Emmanuel ; 4, Garibaldi ; 5, Victor Hugo, who spent 
part of his childhood at Portoferraio ; 6, Mazzini. The 
connection of Napoleon with the town is not recorded, but 
there is a prominent tablet to the memory of the anarchist 
Ferrero, in the Piazza Cavour. A curious memento of the 


Emperor is to be found in the church of the Misericordia, 
in the shape of a large ebony coffin, in which is placed a 
bronze copy of the mask of Napoleon taken after death at 
St. Helena. The coffin and mask were presented to the church 
by Prince Anatole Demidoff, together with an endowment of 
funds to pay for an annual funeral service on the 5th May, 
the day of the Emperor's death. All the notabilities of the 
island attend the service, from the sub-prefect downwards, 
and usually a torpedo-boat or other war- vessel comes into the 
harbour for the naval officers to be present. 

The population of Portoferraio was about three thousand 
in the time of Napoleon, and it remained at about that 
figure until the end of the nineteenth century. Tall chimneys 
and furnaces for the extraction of the ore have now been 
erected, and a new suburb has arisen to accommodate the 
workmen. From most points the ugly buildings and the 
black smoke destroy the beauties of the town and sea. 
Portoferraio is now best seen from the south-west of the bay, 
with a blinker on the left eye. The chimneys obtrude upon 
the visitor from every other quarter, and are the first things 
seen when approaching by water. 

Porto Longone, the second town of the island, is on the 
south-east. Above the small town there was a strong citadel, 
but the principal fortifications were blown up by order of 
Napoleon, to save expense and concentrate his forces at 
Portoferraio. The place is now used as a prison for Italian 

Of the other towns or villages the best known is Capoliveri, 
said to have derived its name from Caput Liberum, a city 
which was a legal refuge for debtors and other delinquents. 
The inhabitants were noted for their independent spirit. 
On more than one occasion they successfully resisted foreign 
invaders, when the rest of the island was being subjected. 
They still have a character for turbulence. 

Elba is quite out of the way of tourists and is seldom visited 
by foreigners. An occasional hero-worshipper may make the 


journey, but it is not customary for writers to describe this 
home of Napoleon from personal knowledge. The island is 
romantic and picturesque, and at a distance from the smelting 
furnaces of Portoferraio there is a peaceful stillness in the 
life which has its charm. 

Every small island lying in frequented waters becomes the 
prey of various conquerors in turn, and Elba was no exception. 
It was a Roman colony at an early date. After the fall of 
Rome the island had the usual succession of barbarian 
conquerors. Civilisation returned when in the eleventh 
century Pisa became mistress of Elba and Corsica, much to 
the advantage of both islands. After the defeat of Pisa by 
Genoa at the naval battle of Meloria in 1284, both islands were 
ceded to Genoa, but Elba was soon afterwards bought back 
by Pisa, while unhappy Corsica was left to the harsh Genoese 

In the beginning of the fifteenth century Elba, Pianosa, 
and Monte Cristo belonged to the Principality of Piombino. 
The island was captured and its inhabitants carried off as 
slaves by the famous corsair, Barbarossa, in 1534, and when 
it had been to some extent repeopled it was again devastated 
by Barbarossa ten years later. In 1548 Cosimo de Medici, 
Duke of Florence, founded the city of Portoferraio, after 
whom it was given the name of Cosmopoli. Napoleon at one 
time proposed to return to that name, when he was talking 
of his scheme for making the town a cosmopolitan home for 
all the talents of all the nations. The fortifications he found 
in existence had not been much changed since their erection. 
Thanks to these works Portoferraio successfully beat off the 
raid of another corsair, Dragut of Tripoli, in 1552, but the 
remainder of the island fell into the pirate's hands. Dragut 
repeated the capture and spoliation a few years later. 

Elba still remained, with the exception of Portoferraio, 
part of the dominions of the Prince of Piombino, and though 
the Florentine influence spread from the only town which 
was safe from pirates, over the mines and much of the island. 


it did not grow strong enough to obtain a formal cession of 
territory. That was obtained by the Spaniards. In 1603 
the fortress of Longone was built by Santa Cruz, sent for that 
purpose by the Spanish Viceroy of Naples. The island was 
then under the three jurisdictions of Florence, Naples, and 
Piombino. When the French revolution broke out this 
division was still in force. Portoferraio belonged to the 
Grand Duke of Tuscany, Porto Longone to Spain, the 
remainder of the island to Piombino. 

Then came to Portoferraio, in January, 1794, several 
thousand French refugees from Toulon, brought by the 
British fleet, and on the 9th July, 1796, British troops were 
sent to occupy the town. They erected a battery in support 
of Falcone Fort, known as Forte Inglese. Soon, however, 
in consequence of General Bonaparte's victories in Italy 
in 1796-7, it was decided to evacuate Corsica and Elba, and 
the British troops left the latter island on the 28th April, 

A period of anarchy ensued. With the changes in progress 
on the Continent, it was not always easy to say to whom the 
Island of Elba belonged. By the Treaty of Amiens it became 
French ; it was occupied by French troops and formally 
annexed to France, and the syndics of the various communes 
swore fealty to the French Republic. On the 12th January, 
1803, a Commissary General was established at Portoferraio, 
with administration over Elba, Capraia, Palmajola, Pianosa, 
and Monte Cristo. The fortifications were improved, and 
two battalions of local troops were raised. 

In March, 1805, the Emperor Napoleon gave this archipelago 
of islands to his sister filise, with the principality of Piombino. 
filise became Grand Duchess of Tuscany in 1809. In 1814 
Elba was blockaded by a British fleet. Then rumours arrived 
of the fall of Napoleon. On the 21st April the garrison of 
Porto Longone, amongst whom were many Italians, killed 
their commander and made for Rio, where they seized a 
vessel and sailed for the Continent. On the same day 


Napoleon was burned in effigy at Marciana. Rio also was in 

On the 27th General Montresor, the English Commander, 
sent to General Dalesme, the French Commandant of the 
island, the news of the fall of Napoleon and restoration of 
the Bourbons, and a summons to surrender, which was 
ignored ; but on the next day an envoy arrived from the 
Provisional Government announcing the abdication of 
Napoleon and his imminent arrival to take possession of the 
island. Dalesme hoisted the Bourbon flag and waited for the 
further instructions which he shortly after received from 
Dupont, Minister of War, to deliver the island to " Napoleon 
Bonaparte, heretofore Emperor of the French." 



IN the afternoon of May 3rd, 1814, H.M. frigate Un- 
daunted lay to off Portoferraio. To notify the arrival 
of Napoleon and ascertain what kind of a reception 
might be expected, a boat left under the charge of 
Lieutenant Hastings, carrying General Drouot, Colonel 
Campbell, Captain Clam, and Lieutenant Smith. Drouot 
delivered to Dalesme a letter from Napoleon announcing 
that he had chosen Elba for his future abode. 

The letter was printed and placarded about the town while 
a deputation returned to the Undaunted in the ship's boat 
to announce the grateful submission of the authorities. The 
party comprised General Dalesme, the sub-prefect, the 
Commander of the Elba National Guard, and Pons de 
I'Herault, the administrator of the mines at Rio. 

Andre Pons, born at Cette in 1772, was the son of a small 
innkeeper. He went to sea, and at an early age obtained the 
command of a merchant ship ; then he entered the French 
Navy. In 1793 he volunteered for the army and became a 
captain of artillery. In that capacity he served at the siege 
of Toulon, where he made the acquaintance of Napoleon. 
After the siege Napoleon was on one occasion the guest of 
Pons at Bandol, where he arrived in the course of his inspec- 
tion of the coast defences, bringing with him Louis and the 
war commissioner, Boinod. Napoleon, Pons, and Boinod 
were afterwards to spend much time together at Elba. 
Pons gave his guests a dish of the famous houillahaisse of 



Provence, which Boinod told Pons he had not forgotten, 
and Louis remembered even in his old age. Pons had a 
varied career. In 1809 he obtained the post of administrator 
of the Rio mines ; he afterwards became in turn a Prefect 
of the Empire and of the Monarchy of July, and finally a 
Councillor of State in the Second Republic. He lived to see 
the Second Empire, and died in 1858.^ 

Pons was a republican from the first days of the Revolu- 
tion, and developed into an ardent Jacobin and Robespierrist. 
He had not changed his opinions. He was still an opponent 
of the Empire, but he had become at the same time a fervid 
admirer of the Emperor. Though most of his time was spent 
at Rio, Pons was often in Portoferraio, and saw a good deal of 
Napoleon. He made a careful study of the great man, 
who engaged him to write an account of the Elban sojourn, 
and read a few of the first pages. In June, 1815, in his last 
interview with the Emperor, Pons was again urged to carry 
out the work, and Napoleon mentioned to him several things 
he should not forget to chronicle. Pons asserted that it was 
only at Elba that Napoleon could be properly examined and 
comprehended. As Emperor he was placed too high to be 
visible to ordinary mortals. At St. Helena he was posing 
for posterity. There is much to be said for that opinion. 

Pons had frequent discussions about the character of 
Napoleon with his two chief friends, Drouot and Peyrusse. 
But, though he cogitated much, and took some notes, he 
did not set to work seriously till long afterwards, and at his 
death in 1858 the result of his labours had not been published. 
It was not till the end of the nineteenth century that his most 
important material was issued in a connected form, by L. G. 
Pelissier, in two works, " Souvenirs et Anecdotes de I'lle 
d'Elbe " (1897), and " Memoire aux Puissances Allies " 

Pons writes sometimes of his hero in terms suitable 
only to the Messiah. " The Emperor saw the quarries ; he 
* Pons, " Souvenirs et Anecdotes," edited by L. G. Pelissier, p. x. 

O '-^ 


spoke : ' Let the quarries be exploited,' and they were 
exploited." And again : " The Emperor's glance passed in 
the direction of the salt works and the salt works were 
vivified." And Pons was deficient in humour. He records 
without a smile the sublime remark of Napoleon, intended 
to support his dictum that "the French heart is human 
perfection," that "the French Army has left in foreign 
countries thousands of souvenirs of affection which will never 
be effaced." 

But if Pons became sometimes, like many others, spell- 
bound in the presence of Napoleon, he differs from other 
writers of contemporary memoirs in that he had no career 
to exaggerate, no reputation to defend, and no grudge to 
satisfy. The personal factor, which distorts every man's 
vision, was thus reduced to comparative insignificance. And 
he approached the study from the best standpoint, that 
of the republican admirer. He admired the First Consul, 
disapproved of the Emperor, and was fascinated by the 
Genius. That is precisely the modern standpoint. Pons 
must be taken, then, with a friendly smile here and there, 
as one of the most independent -minded, honest, careful, and 
generally reliable of all those who have described their 
impressions of Napoleon. He had an exceptional opportunity, 
and a proper spirit, and his conclusions deserve attention. 

Pons has left an account of the reception by Napoleon of 
the Elban worthies, and of the emotions they experienced 
in being presented to the greatest man in the world. After 
explaining how strong was still his hostility to the Napoleonic 
Empire, he proceeds : — 

"And I was going to appear before the hero who had 
voluntarily laid down his halo of glory ! I was going to appear 
before the extraordinary man whom I had so often blamed 
and at the same time admired, and for whom, also, I had so 
often prayed during his holy struggle on the sacred soil ! 
I was about to present myself to Napoleon, to the Emperor 
Napoleon, upon an English frigate ! It all seemed to me a 


dream, a painful dream, a frightful dream. My heart was 
fit to burst, my spirits were dejected, my mind was dis- 
tracted, a general trembling took from me the free exercise 
of my faculties, and I felt as if I should swoon. I forgot the 
deceptions of the Empire, I had become almost Imperial. 
Misfortune impressed upon me a sense of reverence for the 
most illustrious of its victims. We went on board the 
English frigate. The Emperor Napoleon was announced. 
The Emperor showed himself at the door of his cabin. Our 
emotions were profound. Instinctively we leaned upon each 
other, and became as in a condition of enchantment. Our 
attitude was purely contemplative. The Emperor stopped 
for a moment, he seemed inclined to examine us ; we made 
a movement to go towards him, he came to us. General 
Roller and Colonel Campbell were extremely respectful. 

"The Emperor was wearing the green uniform of the 
chasseurs of the Imperial Guard. The star of the Legion of 
Honour, fastened to the buttonhole, was that of a simple 
chevalier, and he was not wearing the iron crown. He had 
been dressed with care, his appearance was that of a soldier 
prepared for a reception. His manner was calm, his eyes were 
bright, his expression seemed full of benevolence, and a 
dignified smile adorned his lips. His arms were crossed 
behind his back. We thought he had come without a hat, 
but when he turned towards us, we saw that he held in his 
right hand a small round sailor's hat, at which we were 


" General Dalesme faltered out to the Emperor some words of 
respect and affection. We also, we tried to stammer out some 
words, we had the persuasive eloquence of emotion. The 
Emperor understood it all ; he replied to us with paternal 
kindness, as if he had heard all that we were unable to say 
to him. He seemed to have meditated his reply ; it even 
seemed that his words must have been prepared, they were 
so clear and precise. 

" The Emperor related rapidly the recent misfortunes of 


France. He spoke as if he had not himself been the pivot 
of all these great events. His sentiments betokened a burning 
patriotism. He expressed the intention of consecrating 
himself henceforth to the welfare of the Elbans. Then he 
told us that he would not enter Portoferraio until the new 
flag that he was going to adopt was waving there. He 
desired the municipality to give him ideas on the point. 
Before dismissing us, he spoke privately for a moment 
to General Dalesme, then he addressed a few words to each 
one of us, and I obtained the smallest share, for he merely 
asked me what were my duties. We retired. The orderly 
officer reconducted us to the place of embarkation." 

When a red republican could be so moved by the presence 
of Napoleon there was no need for anxiety as to the reception 
awaiting him in the island. The inhabitants of Porto- 
ferraio were in a state of ecstasy at the good news, for not 
only was Elba to share in Napoleon's immortality, but the 
presence of the Emperor and his followers, with the dis- 
tinguished visitors who would be attracted to the island, 
would bring wealth to them all. Every house was illuminated 
with candles on the window-sills, while the almost incredible 
event was discussed amidst an excitement that kept the town 
awake half the night. The officials had scarcely any rest. 
They had to find a suitable house for Napoleon and make the 
necessary alterations for a formal reception. Dalesme 
offered the Commandant's house, but the Hotel de Ville 
was more central and was decided upon. The furniture had 
to be removed, and more suitable articles searched for and 
placed in their new positions. The National Guard had to be 
summoned for the morrow's ceremony, also the French 
garrison ; and the religious preparations had to be made. 
The lists of those who should have the honour of presentation 
had to be made up, and as Bertrand had written that it was 
" essential that a large concourse of persons should be 
present to receive the Emperor," couriers had to be sent in 
all haste to the neighbouring communes to collect as many 


as possible, especially the Mayors and their chief assistants. 
All this had to be done in the night, and, as Pons complains, 
" the hours were passing away with giant strides." 

The printers were busy with the necessary proclamations, 
which they contrived to get out in the early morning. The 
Commandant issued the following manifesto, in which he 
made known the terms of Napoleon's declaration : — 

" Inhabitants of the Island of Elba, 

" The vicissitudes of human affairs have brought into the 
midst of you the Emperor Napoleon, and by his choice he is 
given to you as your Sovereign. Before entering inside your 
walls your new and august monarch has addressed to me the 
following words, which I hasten to make known to you, 
as they are the guarantee of your future happiness : — 

" ' General, I have sacrificed my rights to the interests of 
the country, and have reserved for myself the Sovereignty 
and the property of the Island of Elba, to which all the 
Powers have consented. Make known this new state of 
things to the inhabitants, and the choice I have made of their 
island for my residence, on account of the mildness of their 
manners and of their climate. Tell them that they will be 
the constant object of my most active concern.' 

" Elbans, these words require no comment ; they deter- 
mine your future. The Emperor has judged you correctly. 
I owe you this justice, and I render it to you. 

" Inhabitants of the island of Elba, I am about to leave 
you. The parting will be painful to me, for I love you 
sincerely, but the thought of your good fortune sweetens the 
bitterness of my departure ; and in whatever place I may he> 
I shall always be close to this island in the recollection of 
the virtues of its inhabitants, and in the good wishes I shall 
have on their behalf. 

" Portoferraio, 4 May, 1814. 

"The General of Brigade, Dalesme." 

Z ii 


Pons remarks that the placards were still on the walls in 
which Dalesnie accused the Elbans of being savages, armed 
for the purpose of pillage ; and with regard to the attempt 
to impose upon Napoleon with a crowd gathered from all 
parts, he observes that the Emperor knew quite well the size 
of the town, and the kind of collection it would normally 

The Vicar-General Arrighi, a cousin of Napoleon's, issued 
the following ecstatic charge to his flock : — 

" To our well beloved in the Lord, our brothers of the 
clergy, and to all the faithful on the island, salutation and 

" Divine Providence which, in its strength and benevolence, 
disposes all things and assigns to peoples their destiny, has 
decided that amidst the changing politics of Europe we should 
in future be the subjects of Napoleon the Great. 

" The island of Elba, already celebrated for its natural 
productions, becomes to-day still more illustrious in the 
history of nations ; for the homage it tenders to its new 
Prince of immortal glory. The island of Elba enters among 
the ranks of nations, and its small area becomes ennobled 
through the name of its Sovereign. 

" Raised to so sublime an honour it welcomes to its bosom 
the Anointed of the Lord and the other distinguished persons 
who surround him. When H.M. the Emperor and King 
made the choice of this island for his retreat, he announced 
to the world his predilection. 

" Wealth will pour into the land, and from all parts people 
will hasten to our shores to contemplate a hero. 

" Before he put a foot upon this shore he announced our 
destiny and our happiness : ' / shall be a good Father,'' he 
said, ' he my good children.^ 

" Most loved and faithful ones, what tender words ! What 
benevolent expressions ! What hopes we may entertain of 
our future felicity ! May these words rest with delight in your 


thoughts, and impress themselves with transports of con- 
solation in your hearts. May fathers repeat them to their 
children, and so perpetuate from generation to generation 
the memory of these words which assure the glory and pros- 
perity of the Island of Elba. 

" Fortunate inhabitants of Portoferraio, the sacred person 
of H.M. the Emperor and King will be within your walls. 
Renowned as you always have been for the sweetness of your 
character and your affection for your Princes, Napoleon the 
Great already appreciates you ; never destroy the favourable 
opinion he has formed of you. 

" And you all, faithful in Jesus Christ, be worthy of your 
fortune ; nan sint schismata inter vos, idem sapite, pacem 
habete, et Deus pads et dilectionis erit vohiscum. 

" May faithfulness, gratitude, submission, reign in your 
hearts ! Join all in the respectful sentiments of love for your 
Prince, who is more your father than your Sovereign, and 
exult with holy joy in the bounty of the Lord, who has 
reserved for you this auspicious event for all eternity. 

" With that intention we order that on Sunday next in all 
the churches a solemn Te Deum shall be sung, as token of 
thanks to the Almighty, for the precious gift he has accorded 
us in the abundance of his mercy. 

" Giuseppe Filippo Arrighi, 

On the important day. May 4th, Napoleon, who was as 
eager to examine his new domain as the inhabitants were to 
gaze at him, arose at daylight and went on deck, where he 
had a long conversation with the harbourmaster about the 
anchorage, fortifications, etc. At half-past six the Undaunted 
moved into the harbour and anchored. The ship was at 
once surrounded by small craft carrying excited spectators, 
some singing to the accompaniment of their guitars, others 

^ 'ITie Italian text is in Livi^ " Napoleone all' isola d' Elba/' p. 268. 


playing the flute or banging upon the tambourine, while 
the remainder cheered and raised their hats on their oars. 

Several of the chief inhabitants asked for audiences. 
Napoleon received Colonel Vincent, commanding the 
Engineers, the President of the Tribunal, and the Vicar- 
General Arrighi — representatives of the army, the law, and 
the Church. 

He was impatient to get ashore, but did not wish to be 
recognised before the official reception. At 8 a.m. he covered 
himself with a great-coat and embarked in one of the boats 
of the Undaunted, accompanied by Ussher, Campbell, 
Bertrand, and Vincent. When half-way across the harbour 
he remarked that he was without a sword, and asked w^hether 
the Elbans were addicted to assassination. " Evidently," 
says Campbell, " he is greatly afraid of falling in this way." 
They went to examine a house which had looked well from 
the ship, and wandered about for a couple of hours. A peas- 
ant alarmed Napoleon by suddenly shouting : " Viva il Re 
d'Inghilterra ! " It appears that Ussher, after the fashion 
of sailors, had insisted upon mounting the bare back of one 
of the small horses of the island, and although he clung to 
the horse's mane, he was soon deposited upon the earth. 
He gave the boy who had brought the pony a guinea, to 
which the lad responded by cheering the King of England, 
believing that only a King carried guineas, and that His 
Majesty King George was before him. 

They returned on board for breakfast. A book was pro- 
duced containing illustrations of Elban and Tuscan flags, 
from which Napoleon selected one that had been used in the 
time of Cosimo de Medici. It was white with a red diagonal 
stripe, upon which Napoleon placed three of his bees in gold. 
He said it would thus symbolise his intention to cultivate 
peace, harmony, and industry. The tailor of the Undaunted 
was instructed to make tw^o of these flags, one to be hoisted 
upon the fort, the other upon the barge of the Undaunted. 
Elba still has the Napoleonic arms. In 184^0 the flag with 


bees was ratified by the Grand Duke Leopold. By a Royal 
Decree of the 23rd February, 1902, arms were for the first 
time conceded to the Province of Leghorn, which comprises 
the city of Leghorn and the islands Gorgona, Elba, Pianosa, 
Monte Cristo, and Giglio. Capraia is under the jurisdiction 
of Genoa. The arms are thus described in the " Bolletino 
della Consulta Araldica," Vol. V : " Troncato di Elba che 
e d' argento alia banda di rosso, carica di tre api d' oro ; e di 
Livorno che e di rosso al castello d' argento, merlato d' oro, 
aperto e finestrato di nero, uscente da un mare d' azzuro 
fluttuoso di argento ; colla torre destra cimata da una 
bandiora bifida, bianca, scritta col motto Fides al naturale." 
(Per fess. 1. Elba ; argent on a bend gules, three bees or. 
2. Leghorn ; gules, a double-towered castle argent, embattled 
or, door and windows sable, issuant from a sea wavy azure ; 
on the dexter tower a pennant argent with the word Fides. y 

Napoleon entered the barge of the Undaunted accompanied 
by Roller, Campbell, Clam, Ussher, Drouot, and Bertrand. 
The yards were manned and royal salutes were fired by the 
Undaunted (101 guns), by the batteries, and by two French 
corvettes which happened to be in the harbour ; and the 
churches rang their bells. In deference to the wishes of 
Napoleon, who expressed great anxiety for his personal 
safety, boats containing British marines kept close to the 

As they approached the shore it was seen that the quays 
were a mass of people and that the ramparts were crowded. 
From the windows of the houses bright-coloured shawls 
and rugs were hanging out, and the ladies of Elba were in 
their best clothes. 

On landing Napoleon was received by the civil and military 
authorities, and the Mayor, Traditi, advanced, bowed low, 
and presented the keys of the town on a silver plate. He had 
prepared a little speech, but was overcome with emotion 

1 I am indel)ted to Mr. Montgomery Carmichael, British Consul at Leg- 
horuj for this reference, and also for tlie translation. 


From a French caricature of 1814 


and unable to utter a word. Napoleon returned him the 
keys, saying, " I confide them to you, and I could not do 
better." He was then conducted by the Vicar-General under 
a red canopy covered with tinsel and bordered with gilt paper. 
He was clad in his green Chasseur's uniform, with white 
breeches, and he wore the star of the Legion of Honour, and 
the decoration of the iron crown ; on his hat was a cockade 
with the new Elban colours. As he walked forward he was 
followed in procession by Generals Bertrand and Drouot ; 
Captain Ussher and General Dalesme ; the Austrian and 
British Commissioners ; Captain Clam and Lieut. Hastings ; 
the Treasurer Peyrusse, and the Pole Jersmanowski ; behind 
whom came the remainder of Napoleon's suite, followed by 
the officers of H.M.S. Undaunted and the Elban officials. 
The National Guards and the French troops of the line formed 
two rows on either side, but in spite of their presence a dense 
crowd pressed around Napoleon, impeding his progress and 
causing some anxiety for his safety. However, the distance 
was short, and they soon reached the cathedral. 

After Mass and a chanting of the Te Deum, Napoleon was 
glad to find a refuge in the Hotel de Ville close by. Here a 
kind of throne had been made with a sofa placed upon a 
raised platform, covered with scarlet cloth bordered with 
gilt paper. All the notabilities of the island were assembled, 
to whom Napoleon made a short speech : " The softness of 
your climate, the character and morals of your inhabitants, 
have decided me to choose your island for my sojourn. I 
hope you will love me as my children. I shall always feel 
for you the solicitude of a father." Three violins and two 
violoncellos now burst into joyous music, while the inhabitants 
were presented in order of precedence. 

The Emperor astounded these worthy people by the 
knowledge he displayed of their island, quoting the heights 
of their mountains, and displaying information which few 
of them possessed. To their simple minds he seemed endowed 
with miraculous powers. They did not know that these 


particulars were to be found in printed books, which he 
had studied for the occasion. To some of them no doubt all 
writing was a mystery. It was not difficult for a Napoleon 
to send them away gaping with wonder. 

Abler men than the unsophisticated Elbans had often been 
taken in. Ussher was much impressed when Napoleon, on 
seeing a man in the crowd wearing the order of the Legion 
of Honour, sent for him and declared he remembered giving 
him that decoration on the field of Eylau. Such a feat of 
memory was not impossible to Napoleon, but the old soldier 
would be easily induced to believe that his Emperor re- 
membered him. On many occasions Napoleon showed 
powers that seemed miraculous and uncanny, when he had 
in fact just read up the subject or received a hint from his 
suite, and had then carefully prearranged the occasion for 
an impromptu remark. 

Having made the required impression as to his marvellous 
mental powers. Napoleon proceeded to exhibit a physical 
energy which was also regarded as superhuman. He went 
out again for a ride to examine the fortifications, followed 
by his suite. He had been up early, had taken a morning 
stroll, and at his formal reception had walked a few more 
paces ; now he was on horseback for an hour or two. There 
was nothing extraordinary in the achievement. Several of 
his suite had accompanied him at every step, and they had to 
undergo the additional fatigue of walking to and from the 
point from which he started, and were not, like their 
master, spared any of the minor exertions of the expedi- 
tion ; yet it is not contended that these attendants were 
endowed with miraculous powers. Pons has a shrewd remark 
upon this subject. He says : " The Emperor appeared to be 
indefatigable because he did only what he wanted, how he 
wanted, and when he wanted." 



NAPOLEON was not satisfied as to his personal 
safety at the Hotel de Ville. At first he had asked 
Ussher for a guard of fifty marines, but feehng, 
perhaps, that he would be giving offence if he 
showed his lack of confidence in the Elban National Guards 
and the French regiment, he kept only one British officer and 
two sergeants as personal attendants. Now, as always, he 
had confidence in the British character, and no other. He 
took a great fancy to one of the sergeants, an Irishman, who 
was ordered to sleep on a mattress outside his door, with his 
clothes on and his sword ready. When the British sailor left, 
with the Undaunted, one of the orderly officers took his place, 
" in case despatches should arrive in the night." 

Apart from the fear of assassination, the Hotel de Ville 
was unsuitable. Napoleon sought a refuge from the noise 
and smell of the town : where he was mobbed whenever 
he emerged ; where the streets were the only drains ; and 
where he was obliged to make himself unpopular by declaring 
that he disliked music, in order to obtain a little peace from 
the incessant serenading that went on. 

He was up at 4 a.m. on the day after his reception. He 
told Pons that he had many proofs that the dawn was the 
tune when the brain was most keen and precise. Another 
advantage of early rising was that it enabled him to escape 
the crowds. He went on foot for several hours before 
breakfast, inspecting the forts and magazines. In the aiter- 



noon he rode into the country with the intention of selecting 
a country house. 

For his town house, or Palace as it was to be called, his 
first choice was the barrack of St. Francis. There he would 
have been able to find room for General Bertrand and his 
family ; but Bertrand preferred to live apart in his own 
domestic circle. On hearing this Napoleon at once gave in his 
adhesion, " I had almost said submission," writes Pons. 
Colonel Vincent, who was acting as the guide, entered in his 
journal that the Emperor was easier to please than the Grand 
Marshal. On several occasions it was noticed that Napoleon, 
after endeavouring to dispute with Bertrand, gave way. 
For example. Napoleon was enjoying a stroll one evening, 
and hearing a violin and being informed that a dance was 
taking place in honour of the marriage of a sailor, he expressed 
his intention of joining the wedding party. In spite of 
Bertrand's protests he walked on towards the music, but 
finally had to abandon the project. He stopped, and 
remarked with emphasis : " It is in small things, as in great. 
As everybody is against me, I must yield." ^ 

Without further opposition from Bertrand Napoleon 
selected a house situated on the summit above the town, 
close to Fort Stella. It consisted of a central ground floor 
with wings of two stories on each side. One wing was occu- 
pied by officers of the Engineers, the other by their comrades 
of the Artillery, and the centre provided a large meeting- 

Napoleon gave orders that this room should be divided 
by a movable partition, so as to provide a dining-room for 
himself on one side, and another for his suite on the other, 
while by removing the partition the whole space would be 
available for receptions. ^ It was for that purpose all painted 
one colour. He allowed a definite sum, 1600 francs (£64) for 

' As husband and father Bertrand required a home of his own. As Grand 
Marshal an Emperor was necessary to him, and he disapproved of any abate- 
ment of tlie Imperial dignity. 

- Correspondance, No. '2lo7ii. 


the alterations, and fixed the date when they "were to be 
finished ; he cut down the estimate for the movable partition 
from 438 fr. 64 c. to 400 fr. (£16). ^ While the men were at 
work he was already in residence, and he took a great interest 
in their operations, offering criticisms and making changes 
which retarded progress. He even assisted in mixing the 
paint, and stained his fingers in the process. 

He afterwards raised the roof of the central portion of the 
building, to provide a ballroom above. This fine apartment 
had four windows on each side, giving views of the town 
in one direction and of the sea in another. Napoleon may 
have remembered what his father had done to the Casa 
Bonaparte at Ajaccio. The centre was, as in this case, lower 
than the wings. The space under the roof was used as a 
giiardaroba, or storeroom for linen, clothing, and household 
necessaries of all sorts. By raising it Carlo di Bonaparte 
obtained a fine apartment not unlike that which his son was 
now building. 

When the alterations were completed Napoleon occupied 
the ground floor, and his sister Pauline had the first floor, 
with the ballroom for receptions. The ground floor is con- 
sidered by Italians to be unhealthy for the sleeping apart- 
ments, but the house was on a ridge and open on both sides 
to sea and air, and Napoleon was able to step out of his 
rooms on to the garden ; and in the summer it would be 
cooler below than in the rooms near the roof. 

Napoleon's bedroom had two French windows on to the 
garden, and there was a bathroom attached. Adjoining were 
two small rooms, the study and the library. 

The kitchen was on the left, and the dishes had to be 
carried through the garden to the dining-room, but any meals 
which Napoleon took in his bedroom could be served by way 
of a passage. He could reach the apartments of Pauline, and 
thence the reception-room on the first floor, by a private 

* Peyrusse, " Memorial et Archives," Appendix, p. 47. 


The big room is forty feet long by thirty broad. The ceiHng 
decoration of this room is the only reminder of the residence 
of the Emperor. In the centre there is depicted a sceptre 
with leaves of laurel, and in the corner angels hold a wreath 
in each hand ; these symbols of power, honour, and peace 
are supported by six fasces. 

Suitable furniture was lacking. The Palace of Elise, at 
Piombino, contained some serviceable pieces ; when he 
learned this, Napoleon gave orders to Deschamps, the groom 
of the bedchamber, to go to Piombino to fetch it. Koller 
assisted by signing a note to be delivered to the Austrian 
officer in charge. Deschamps was thus enabled to bring away 
all that he demanded. It came in small boats. The cost of 
transport is entered in one of the Treasurer's accounts at 
3282 francs^ (about £130), a considerable sum for so short a 
journey. Deschamps was good enough to give the officer 
an exact statement of all that he had taken, as Campbell 
observed, " on account of whoever might be the owner." 

An opportune storm drove into Portoferraio a ship which 
had on board certain furniture belonging to Prince Borghese, 
the husband of Pauline ; it was being forwarded from Turin 
to Rome. Napoleon appropriated it all, without going to the 
trouble of selection. He observed, with a smile, " It does not 
go out of the family," and was careful to forward to Prince 
Borghese a complete and detailed list of the capture. 
Napoleon also bought, for £200, the furniture belonging to 
the French regiment, and he gave £240 for what he found 
in the quarters of the Engineer and Artillery officers in the 

He used his favourite camp-bed. Visitors were struck with 
the plain simplicity, not to say shabbiness of his apartments. 
Most of the pieces were covered with faded yellow cloth, and 
in a dilapidated condition. When Fleury de Chaboulon 
visited Napoleon he noticed that the " paper of shot silk 
was discoloured and almost worn out, the carpet showed its 
^ Peyrusse^ Appendix, p. 34. 


seams, and had been patched in several places ; some sofas, 
badly covered, completed the furniture. I remembered 
the luxury of the Imperial palaces, and the comparison drew 
from me a deep sigh."^ 

Napoleon brought with him from Fontainebleau the fine 
service of silver which had accompanied him on his campaigns. 
From Fontainebleau also came the greater part of his library. 
He bought some books at a cost of 240 francs at Frejus, 
and at Portoferraio he ordered others to be sent from Paris, 
Genoa, and Leghorn. He returned some to Leghorn to 
be suitably bound, with an " N " stamped on the back. 
He was very particular about the appearance of his books. 
He wrote to Bertrand on the 17th July : " I think it will 
be necessary to have all the books to be sent from Leghorn, 
rebound. Order that, if it is possible, an ' N ' is put on 
each." 2 

On the 19th September ; " Tell your correspondent at 
Leghorn again not to pay for the books until they have been 
accepted and with the reduction I have indicated for the 
old books. The first books which were sent were inferior 
editions and remainders. I prefer to wait and have a good 
library. Counter-order, therefore, all that can be counter- 
ordered. "^ 

Again, on the 3rd October, he writes to Bertrand : " No 
book will be paid for unless it has been accepted by my 
secretary, who will consider price and quality, and will reject 
the books which are in bad condition."* And on the 15th 
November : "I have made some reductions with regard 
to the works which are old and incomplete. Warn Mr. 
Bartolucci that all those which are old or of different editions, 
or which have some defects, will not be accepted."^ 

No author was permitted to present himself, as part of the 

* Fleury de Chaboulon, " Meitioires,'' p. 119. 

* Correspondauce, No. 21591. 

3 " Le Ke^istre de I'ile d'Klbe," edited by L. G. Pe'lissier. 

* Registre, No. 90. 

* Correspoiidauce, No. 21655. 


household, in shabby attire. Imperial etiquette was enforced 
even here. 

On his return to Paris the Emperor gave his library to 
the town of Portoferraio, but the Grand Duke of Tuscany 
confiscated many of the best-bound books, and others have 
been filched away at various times. Those that remain, some 
one thousand volumes in all, are now on shelves at the Hotel 
de Ville. Most of them came from Fontainebleau. There 
are works on mechanics, chemistry, military science, archae- 
ology, natural history, natural philosophy, botany, mineralogy, 
ancient and modern history ; translations of Greek and Latin 
authors ; the works of Voltaire, Rousseau, Montaigne, La 
Fontaine ; and a collection of fairy tales in forty volumes. 
Two English grammars for French students have only a few 
pages cut in each. A book of which most of the pages are 
cut, is a school book having on one side of the pages, "Cent 
pensees d'une jeune Anglaise," and on the other side the 
English equivalent. Napoleon may have turned over the 
leaves of this book with a mild curiosity. A knowledge of 
English would be useful to him in the event, which he 
deemed not impossible, of a future residence in England. 

Napoleon removed the windmills which had given the 
house its name of Mulini. He converted some outbuildings 
that had been used as a guard-house into a small theatre 
for amateur performances. He cleared away a number of 
buildings and thus obtained a small square on the front of 
the house, where his carriage-and-four could turn with 

The house has a frontage of 120 feet. Just below it he built 
two rows of rooms for his orderlies and guards, the roofs 
being almost on a level with the square in front of the house. 
He had to make a road for his carriage for the short 
distance that lay between the house and the tunnel entrance 
to the forts. The only direct route to the Mulini from the 
town is by a long flight of stairs which passes close to the 
guard-houses. With his soldiers close at hand, a fort on 



either side, and the only approaches either through a tunnel 
Of up a stairway, he felt reasonably secure. The house 
and grounds are enclosed within walls on every side, and are 
bounded on the north by the cliff overlooking the sea. 

At the back of the house, on the north, Napoleon made 
a small garden with gravel paths and flower beds in the 
Italian style. The garden is not overlooked by any windows 
save those of the house, and in its present deserted state it 
conveys a feeling of seclusion and repose. The figure of 
Mercury and the Napoleonic shields are late additions by 
Prince Anatole Demidoff ; and there were no substantial 
bushes or flourishing palms in the time of Napoleon. 

At the further end there is a flagged walk 150 feet long, 
and a parapet overlooking the sea. In mid-ocean the islands 
of Capraia and Gorgona are visible on fine days ; on the right 
are the Elban hills, and the Tuscan coast in the distance. 
From this point Napoleon could watch the movements of 
any vessel approaching the harbour. 

Forty years later an English visitor found on the parapet a 
slab of boards roughly nailed together, which had been 
erected to carry Napoleon's telescope.^ Here he would 
tramp up and down and watch the sea for the sails which 
were to bring, first his Guard, then his mother, then his sister 
Pauline; and from here also he saw, with great anxiety, H.M. 
frigate Partridge making for the harbour at the moment 
when all was preparation and bustle there for his departure. 

On the 21st May,^ Napoleon installed himself in the Mulini 
Palace, although even the ground floor was scarcely in- 
habitable, and his medical attendant, Fourreau, declared that 
the smell of the paint was unhealthy.^ The displaced officers 
of engineers and artillery went into the quarters Napoleon 

^ "The Island Empire," p. G. The author of this anonymous work was 
Henry Drummond Wolff, who was an attiiclie at Florence in 11352. I owe 
this discovery to Mr. R. A. Streatlield, of the British Museum. 

* Vincent, "Memoires de Tons," Vol. Ill, p. lUO. 

' At St. Helena Napoleon declined to permit improvements at Longwood, 
alleging his excessive susceptihility to the odour of oil paint. 


was quitting at the Hotel de Ville, where Bertrand and his 
family were also installed. , , . ^ tv,. 

Before that, on the 16th May, Napoleon had given at the 
Hotel de nile his first soeial reeeption, a drawmg-room, or 
cercle des dames. About fifty ladies, dressed in grande toMte, 
were seated on ehairs at eaeh side of the room, with the 
gentlemen standing behind them. When Napoleon entered, 
they all rose, and he went down the line asknig eaeh one the 
same questions, as to the oecupation of the father or husband, 
and. if married, the number of ehildren. Campbell was horri- 
fied to reeognise among the elite of Portoferraio a young 
woman with her two sisters, to whom he had delivered a 
uniform for repairs. He writes of the ceremony : After 
this farce was played off Napoleon spoke to two or three of 
the gentlemen wJ were nearest him at the end of the room 
and at last walked oft, apparently impressed with the 
ridiculous nature of the scene."' 

In the Palais des Moulins Napoleon was not so accessible 
as at the HMel de Ville. The entree was ^^f ""^ §"^"1^^; 
and the etiquette of the Imperial Court was established The 
various officials had to live in or near to the Palace as they 
were liable to be summoned to give an account of their work 
It any hour of the day or night, according to the caprice of 

''Inrdtn::; had to be arranged with General Bertrand, 
the " Grand Marshal of the Palace of the Emperor. 

Born at Chateauroux in 1773, Bertrand was the son of the 
local inspector of waters and forests. In September, 1793, 
alrXantage of the opportunity afforded for a military 
career by the emigration of officers, he entered the Army as a 
Lieutenant of Engineers. In 1798 he went as a Captain to 
Egypt with Napoleon, and by 1800 had risen to the rank of 

''Xt:;^ :r into prominent notice in 1S05, when the 
Austrians were about to blow up the Tabor Bridge at Vienna, 

1 Campbell, p. 231. 


to prevent the French from crossing the river. Murat en- 
deavoured to make the Austrians believe that a truce had 
been declared, but they were not convinced until General 
Bertrand pledged his word of honour for the statement ; 
by means of this deliberate falsehood the bridge was kept 
intact and the French troops were able to cross it, a matter 
of great importance.^ On hearing the story the Emperor, 
perceiving that here he had an officer who was not too squeam- 
ish and would stick at nothing, kept him in good appoint- 
ments. He was sent in 1807 as Napoleon's Adjutant-General 
to the King of Prussia, with instructions to obtain a separate 
treaty of peace with Prussia, but that proved beyond his 

Bertrand was present at Friedland and at Wagram, and 
went through the Russian campaign. In 1813 he had an 
important command ; but he gave the Emperor too 
favourable reports, and thereby deceived him as to the true 
position of affairs — a great disservice. Napoleon, however, 
preferred that type of man near his person, and Bertrand 
having distinguished himself after Leipzig at Hanau, in 
November, 1813, was promoted to the post of Grand Marshal 
of the Palace, to succeed Duroc. 

In that capacity he was with Napoleon at Fontaine- 
bleau, and felt obliged to accompany him to Elba, not, how- 
ever, without letting it be seen that he did so unwillingly, 
and only because his over-sensitive honour made it impossible 
to draw back. Bertrand was from this time forward 
Napoleon's chief supporter, private confidant, and official 

At Elba Bertrand was Chief of the Civil Administration 
with a salary of 20,000 francs (about £800). Madame 
Bertrand, a tall and dignified woman, was the daughter of 
General Arthur Dillon by Anne Laure Girardin, a cousin of 
the Empress Josephine. Her father was guillotined during 
the Terror, when she was eight years old. She had never 
* Fournier, " Napoleon I," Vol. I, p. 37G. 


been in England, but spoke English with ease. Napoleon 
ordered her to marry Bertrand, and though at first she 
refused, she had to submit, and the marriage proved a 
very happy one. 

Madame did not scruple to express to visitors her regret 
at the necessity which compelled her and her family to go to 
Elba ; indeed, she was voluble upon the subject of the 
sacrifices they were making, and declared that nothing would 
induce her to stay more than a few months. Her eldest child, 
a boy, born just before the battle of Wagram in 1809, was the 
godchild of the Emperor and named after him. The second 
child, Hortense, went with the parents to St. Helena. A 
third was born and died at Portoferraio, to the intense grief 
of the parents, who were devoted to their children. Bertrand 
dined habitually with his family and spent as much of his 
time in his own home as Napoleon's service permitted. 
Madame Bertrand was not sociable, did not entertain and 
paid few visits. She kept away even from Napoleon, in 
spite of the Emperor's courtesies towards her. The Ber- 
trands were " correct " to Napoleon. They did their duty 
and no more. 

An English visitor found the Bertrands in miserable 
apartments in the Hotel de Ville : brick floors, bare walls, 
no curtains to the windows, the furniture a few chairs and 
a sofa for Madame Bertrand, consisting of a mattress placed 
on chairs. " How different," said Madame, " from our 
apartments at the Tuileries."^ It was one of Napoleon's 
severest trials that his chief followers made it plain that 
they regarded themselves as martyrs to their position. 

Drouot, born in 1774, was the son of a baker. In the great 
year of opportunity, 1793, he obtained a commission as 
Second Lieutenant in the Artillery. He was present with 
Kellermann at the battle of Fleurus, with Moreau at Hohen- 
linden, and with Napoleon at Wagram, where he distinguished 

^ Vivian, J. H., " Minutes of a conversation with Napoleon Buonaparte at 
Elba," p. 9. 


himself. He went through the Russian campaign. As 
Brigadier-General, in 1813 he commanded the artillery at 
the battles of Liitzen and Bautzen, and was promoted 
before the end of the year to General of Division, A.D.C. 
to Napoleon, and Aide-Major of the Guard. He was thus 
brought near to the person of the Emperor, who was pleased 
with him, and made him a Count of the Empire on the 22nd 
March, 1814. Being at Fontainebleau in attendance, Drouot 
volunteered to follow his benefactor into exile. 

Returning with him to Paris, he was present at Waterloo. 
He did not offer to go to St. Helena. After the return of the 
Bourbons he was tried before a court-martial on the charge 
of high treason, and acquitted. He retired in 1825 as a 
Lieutenant-General, and died in 1847. 

Drouot was the onh^ one of Napoleon's suite wiiose devotion 
was undoubted, beyond all question, for he declined the 
present of 100,000 francs which Napoleon offered him, on 
the express ground that he did not require a bribe to buy his 
allegiance, and that its acceptance would interfere with his 
freedom. He was a bachelor, content with any room that 
might be provided for him. He was very religious, spending 
a good part of every day over his devotions. As Governor 
of the Island and Director of Military Affairs, with a salary of 
12,000 francs (£480), Drouot was industrious, conscientious, 
and devoted to his work. In private life he was much es- 
teemed for his kindness, geniality, and sympathetic good 
nature. There were occasions when Napoleon found Drouot's 
perfections rather fatiguing. 

His two chief followers were as the poles apart in character, 
and in the nature of their allegiance. To Bertrand Napoleon 
was an institution with which he was connected ; to Drouot 
he was the embodiment of the glory of France, and his own 
benefactor, now suffering from misfortune. Bertrand's 
attachment was, in a great measure, selfish or involuntary ; 
Drouot's was due to patriotism, gratitude, and compassion. 
The Treasurer was Guillaumc Peyrusse. Born at Car- 


cassonne in 1776, Peyrusse^ enlisted in the Revolutionary 
army in 1793, at the age of seventeen, and went through 
some of the campaigns in the Pyrenees. He left the army 
in 1800. In the early days of the Empire his brother Andre, 
Receiver-General of the Department of Indre et Loire, 
obtained for him a position in the office of the Crown 
Treasur}^ In 1809 he was Paymaster at headquarters, and in 
that capacity followed the army in the campaign of Wagram. 
In 1812, as Paymaster of the Crown Treasury in the suite 
of the Emperor, he went with him to Moscow, and fol- 
lowed him in the campaigns of Germany in 1813, and of 
France in 1814. He was thus in the suite of Napoleon at 
Fontainebleau at the time of the abdication, and volunteered 
to accompany him to Elba. 

Napoleon gave him the appointment at Elba of Paymaster 
and Receiver-General, at a salary of 12,000 francs (£480). 
When he was asked why he had followed Napoleon, he 
replied : " I did not follow Napoleon, I followed my treasure." 
Peyrusse returned to France with Napoleon, and then his 
ambition was finally satisfied ; he was placed at the head of 
his department as Treasurer-General of the Crown, and was 
made a Baron of the Empire. 

He was living in retirement at Carcassonne when, in 1821, 
the terms of a codicil in the will of Napoleon became known : 
" I had with the banker Torlonia, at Rome, two to three 
hundred thousand livres " (£8000 to £12,000) "of my 
revenues from the Island of Elba. After 1815, M. de la 
Peyrusse, although he was no longer treasurer, and had no 
authority, took for himself this sum. He must be made to 
return it." There was no justification for this statement. 
Peyrusse was a thoroughly honest man, who never took 
advantage of his position, though opportunities for doing so 
with small risk of detection were not wanting. It was very 
hard upon an upright, exact, and conscientious official to be 
thus publicly denounced upon a false charge. However, he 

1 "Lettres inedites du Baron Guillaume Peyrusse/' by L. G. Pelissier. 


succeeded in obtaining from Napoleon's executors complete 
exoneration in writing ; and in 1853 asked for and obtained 
from Napoleon III, expressly as a vindication of his character, 
the decoration of a Commander of the Legion of Honour. 
He died at Carcassonne in 1860, aged eighty-four. 

Peyrusse was fond of good food and wine, and of pretty 
women ; he was a bon viveur so far as his circumstances would 
permit, a gay and light-hearted man. At Elba, where grumb- 
ling was the rule, somebody complained of his perpetual laugh. 
On that dull little island, as during the retreat from Russia, 
and under all conditions, even when prostrated by sea-sickness 
on the voyages to and from Elba — Peyrusse made the best of 
things. He has left memoirs and letters describing his 
experiences with the armies in the campaigns of 1809, 1812, 
1813, and 1814, and during the Elba sojourn, besides his 
official accounts of money transactions. Written without 
affectation or pretension, the ordinary remarks of an average 
official at the time, who happened to ffiid himself a partici- 
pator in events of great importance, these homely records 
are of considerable value. 

The Physician-in-Chief was Fourreau de Beauregard, who 
had been the veterinary surgeon in charge of the Imperial 
stables, and had assisted in the ambulance work in the 
campaign of 1814. His salary was 15,000 francs (£600). He 
was a gossip, who brought Napoleon all the small scandal of 
the place. He visited him at the same hour every morn- 
ing. On one occasion, the Emperor being in his bath, the 
Physician-in-Chief brought him a basin of soup so hot that 
he could not take it, and when Napoleon proceeded to blow 
off the vapour, Fourreau told him that in so doing he absorbed 
air, which might give him colic. Napoleon angrily replied : 
" In spite of Aristotle and his cabal, at my age I know how 
to drink, and do not need to be taught by you." 

Gatti was the apothecary, a person of very moderate 
ability, with a salary of 7800 francs (£312). 

Deschamps and Baillon had been Grooms to the Bedchamber 


at the Tuileries, and were now promoted to the title of 
Prefects of the Palace, with a salary of 4000 francs (£160) 
each. Deschamps was an old gendarme who made him- 
self disagreeable to all with his rough and vulgar manners. 
Baillon was an old soldier who carried his martial air 
into the drawing-room, but he was not unpopular. 

The four chamberlains were Elbans : Lapi, a doctor, 
who was also Director of Domains and Forests, and Com- 
mander of the Elban Guard ; Vantini, of the Elban aristoc- 
racy ; Traditi, Mayor of Portoferraio, also of the aristocrats 
of Elba, an excellent man ; and Gualandi, the Mayor of 
Rio Montague. The salary of the chamberlains was only 
1200 francs (£48). 

There were five orderl}'' officers. At their head was a certain 
Roule, who arrived at Portoferraio declaring himself a 
Major of the Artillery, and a perfervid admirer of Napoleon. 
Although he was a quarrelsome, noisy man, and only a 
Captain, Napoleon accepted his services. Under him were 
Vantini, son of the chamberlain ; Senno, whose father 
was one of the capitalists of the island; Perez, Binelli, 
and Bernotti. 

Paoli, a Corsican, and relative of the great Pasquale Paoli, 
he made Captain of the Elba Gendarmes ; he was trained 
by Napoleon as a personal attendant. The abilities of this 
young man may be judged from the reply he was heard to 
make to an enquiry by the Emperor as to the hour: "It is 
whatever time Your Majesty may please." The remark was 
received with a gesture of expostulation, but Napoleon was 
not displeased by banalities of that sort, and treated Paoli 
with the greatest favour. 

Another Corsican whom Napoleon found at Elba was 
the Vicar-General, Arrighi, whom he appointed his private 
chai3lain. Arrighi appears to have been a contemjitible 
person, and addicted to indulgence in wine. He vaunted 
his powers of protection to all Elbans as a cugino carnaro, 
or blood cousin, of the Emperor. 

§ I 

>< S 


Of the two secretaries, Napoleon took from Bertrand, 
Rathery and gave him Savournin instead ; their salaries 
were 4000 (£160) and 2000 francs (£80). 

The attendants officially described as " pour la bouche,'' 
or as we should say, " in the kitchen," were a maitre d'hotel, 
a carver, a chef, with assistant and boy, a roaster, three 
other assistants, a butler, a steward, a boy, and a baker, 
thirteen persons in all, whose salaries came to a total of 
20,000 francs (£800). 

Napoleon brought with him from Fontainebleau two valets, 
Hubert and Pelard, capable men who, however, refused to 
remain. They returned to France, and were replaced by 
Marchand, salary 2400 francs (£96), and Jilli, 2000 francs (£80). 
The name of Marchand was from henceforth to be associated 
with that of Napoleon, and seldom has a valet become so 
great a personage. Marchand was a superior man. He had 
been well educated for one in his position, his manners 
and tact were perfect, and he became devoted to the 

The two grooms, St. Denis, known as Ali to imitate the 
mameluke, and Noverraz, were faithful servants who, with 
Marchand, accompanied Napoleon to St. Helena. There 
were two ushers, Dorville and Santini ; six footmen, of whom 
Archambault and Mathias were the chief, and nine other 
attendants, making with valets and grooms a total of 
twenty-one persons. 

There was a head gardener, Hollard, w^ith one assistant 
under him ; and a director of music, whose band consisted 
of one pianist and two female singers. 

Of the civil administrators of the island, Baccini, a 
Genoese, was a capable but not over - assiduous President 
of the Tribunal. 

Poggi, Judge, was a Corsican settled in Elba. Napoleon 
charged him with the secret police, and was always inter- 
ested in any reports he had to make, chiefly small scandal 
and gossip about the leading inhabitants. 


Balbiani was the Intendant, a hard-working man of good 
business habits. It amused him to ask whether he was to 
regard himself as French or Tuscan or Elban, and give the 
answer, saying that he belonged to the nation that kept him 
in employment. He had a large family. 

Napoleon insisted upon the strictest etiquette being main- 
tained, precisely as if he were still at the Tuileries. He 
told his followers that he tested their conduct by that high 
standard. When he drove out, Bertrand and Drouot, if in the 
carriage, had to keep their hats off so long as they were in the 
town. When Napoleon was in Ussher's barge with Koller, 
Campbell, and others, some of the party, following Bertrand's 
example, remained uncovered, until Napoleon excused them, 
saying : " We are all here as soldiers together." When a 
stranger kept his hat on Napoleon always told his attendants 
to put theirs on also. 

He neglected none of the privileges of royalty. One of his 
orders to the marine was : " When I go out " (on the water) 
*' my flag will not be unfurled if I am incognito ; nobody 
will pay any attention ; if I am in ceremonious state my 
flag will be hoisted." 

He drove always with four horses, with postilions and out- 
riders, and a small mounted Staff, with a few Polish Lancers. 
He put down £20 a month in his personal budget to be dis- 
tributed in charity, and seldom gave anything in the street 
to beggars, saying that if he did so they would surround 
him and make walking impossible. Indeed, he found that 
even on horseback he could not escape. One day, when he 
was riding in the country a woman kneeled in the middle 
of the road, apparently absorbed in her devotions. When 
Napoleon approached she rose and clasped the legs of his 
horse in a manner dangerous both to herself and the Emperor. 
She demanded alms, Avhicli were hastily given to be rid of 

Petitioners he generally attended to. A man presented a 
petition beginning with the words : " Sire, it has happened 


to me as to you, I have been dismissed from employment 
without knowing it or wishing it, as you will understand." 
Napoleon read no further ; exclaiming that he could not allow 
a man to die of hunger who stood exactly in his own position, 
he ordered some employment to be found for him. 

Some of those who waylaid him wished only the honour 
of his notice, and with them he was affable and encouraging, 
as long as he was able to maintain his dignity. He showed 
great satisfaction when he had established a marked 
superiority in the conversation. Victory was necessary to 
him as much in these chance encounters as on the great 

Of the English travellers a few obtained private audiences 
with the Emperor ; the remainder collected in the road 
where he was expected to pass, and stood at the side to gaze 
at the prodigy. Napoleon said one day : " I am for them an 
object of great curiosity. Let them satisfy it, then they will 
go back to their country and amuse the ' Gentlemans ' by 
misrepresenting my appearance and gestures." Then, after 
a pause, he added sadly : " They have won the game and may 
claim the reward." ^ But he soon became annoyed at being 
regarded as an animal to be watched in his cage, and gave 
instructions that new arrivals were to be closely examined. 
Angles, the Minister of Police in Paris, received from his 
spy a report that the restrictions upon the right of landing 
were due to the Emperor's fear of assassination. A boat 
arrived one day with thirty-two passengers, of whom only 
four were allowed to land, and they were English, whom 
Napoleon trusted. 

Pons saw much of the English visitors, for most of them 
went to visit the mines. He was surprised to fmd that they 
did not rush into each other's arms when they chanced to 
meet, and asked Campbell to explain the national idio- 
syncrasy of waiting to be spoken to. Campbell said that 
many English travelled merely to display their wealth, and 
1 Pous, p. 127. " Pons, p. 83. 


the better class of English visitors would have nothing to 
do with them. And this remark of Pons is also quite 
modern: "What is uniform among the English, to what- 
ever class they may belong, is praise of the Emperor, and 
really they seem to rival each other in their expressions of 

< ~ 

— ? 



ON the 6th May, two days after his arrival, 
Napoleon made an expedition to Rio to inspect 
the famous mines. At 6 a.m., accompanied by 
Bertrand and Drouot, with Dalesme, Ussher, and 
Campbell, he embarked on the quay in the barge of the 
Undaunted, and crossed the bay to the eastern shore at 
Magazzini, where Elban ponies were waiting to carry the 
party over the mountains. The road was romantic and the 
views beautiful. They had first to ascend the hill of Vol- 
terraio, the road winding from side to side amid a luxurious 
vegetation of aloe, clematis, geranium, lavender, and many 
odoriferous shrubs. They passed near the summit upon 
which were still the remains of the famous fortress which had 
resisted even Barbarossa himself. Here the Elbans had made 
their last stand, and as there are precipices on all sides the 
failure of the corsair is not surprising. Napoleon was much 
impressed by the remarkable position of the citadel. 

They were met above Rio Montague by Pons and Gualandi, 
the Mayor. Hillocks of the excavated red earth lay about. 
The visitors were taken into the principal mine, two guides 
with torches showing the way. When they had arrived at a 
large opening it was suddenly lighted up, to the astonishment 
of the simple Ussher, who at first thought there had been 
an explosion, and admired the composure of Napoleon, calmly 
taking a pinch of snuff. 

The fishermen of Rio Marina had already cast their nets, 



and had obtained a miraculous draught, a fish weighing 
twenty-five pounds. The march into the small town was of 
a triumphal nature. Young girls headed the procession 
which greeted the Emperor and escorted him into the town, 
while the merchant vessels, anchored near the shore, fired off 
all the guns they had. People crowded to kiss Napoleon's 
hands, or to present petitions. The Elban flag waved over 
the house of Pons, the priest stood at the door of the church : 
" It was a hearty reception," says Pons, " worth more than 
many others."^ 

So far Napoleon had been very affable towards the ad- 
ministrator of the mines, but unfortunately there were a 
number of lilies growing in beds near the house,whichNapoleon 
observed ; he called the attention of Pons to the Bourbon 
symbol, and then turned his back upon the distressed official. 
He asked Dalesme whether Pons was still a republican, to 
which the General could only reply that he was always a 
patriot. At breakfast Napoleon, with studied rudeness to 
Pons, made a point of talking to the Mayor and asking him 
for details about the mines. The meal was not gay. Ber- 
trand never opened his mouth. Taillade, a former midship- 
man of the French Navy, had the audacity to say of a 
mathematical problem which Napoleon found some difficulty 
in solving : " Nothing could be simpler, a child could do it." 
Everybody was aghast, but the Emperor soon succeeded in 
exposing his ignorance. 

They returned as they had come, by horseback over the 
mountains, and then at 5 p.m. entered the barge for Porto- 
ferraio. Pons relates that Gualandi, having accompanied 
Napoleon to the water's edge, asked permission to retire, 
and then, with one knee on the earth, kissed the Emperor's 
hand and said, " In te Domine, speravi " ; whereupon 
Dalesme, disgusted at the slavish ceremony, told him that 
he was " une canaille dhme fameuse espece " (an utter cad). 
Napoleon pretended not to hear that remark. Pons then 

1 Pons^ p. 47. 


" saluted " him and returned to Rio. Napoleon observed to 
Dalesme that Pons " had not troubled himself about going 
off." Pons learned that he should have accompanied 
Napoleon back to the Palace unless he had obtained leave to 
depart. He did not perceive that Napoleon preferred the 
excessive self-abasement of Gualandi to his own self-sufficient 
independence. Even Bertrand was smartly censured on one 
occasion for having omitted to obtain permission to depart. 
He had gone to Longone and been received by Napoleon, 
and had returned to Portoferraio when their business was 
concluded. Napoleon wrote to him : " Monsieur Count 
Bertrand, you left without first speaking to me ; that is 
very bad behaviour, and another time you must wait until 
I have dismissed j'ou."^ 

On the 8th May the Cura^oa, Captain Tower, arrived 
at Portoferraio bringing Mr. Locker, Secretary to the 
Commander-in-Chief, Sir Edward Pellew. It was Locker's 
duty to present to Napoleon a copy of the convention of the 
23rd April, preliminary to the Treaty of Paris. Napoleon 
read it in silence, in the presence of Roller, Campbell, Ussher, 
Bertrand, and the chief followers, and when he had concluded, 
returned it to Locker with polite expressions of his obligations 
to the Commander-in-Chief. He was demonstrating his 
complete indifference to all such affairs, having no longer 
any part in politics. 

On the 9th Roller took his leave, and embarked on the 
Cura^oa for Genoa. Roller had been respected and liked 
by them all. Napoleon gave him the following letter for the 
Empress Marie Louise : — 

" PoRTOFEERAio, the 9th May, 1814. 
" My good Louise, 

" General Roller, who accompanied me here, and with 
whom I am very pleased, is returning. I am entrusting him 
with this letter. I beg thee to write to thy father to do some- 
' Correspondauce, No. 21G33. 


thing to show regard for this General, who has been most 

" I have been here five days. I am having prepared a 
nice house with a garden where the air is good, where I shall 
go in three days. My health is perfect. The inhabitants 
seem good people and the country is agreeable. What I want 
is to have news of thee, and to know thou art well ; I have 
received nothing since the courier that thou didst send to me, 
who reached me at Frejus. Good-bye, my friend. Give a 
kiss to my son." 

Still the proud man would not ask his wife to join him. 

This day Napoleon paid his first visit to Porto Longone, 
where he was received with the customary processions 
and firing of guns. In the evening he had Dalesme and Camp- 
bell to dinner, and talked freely on politics. 

On the 10th May Napoleon rode up a high hill above Porto- 
ferraio to a spot which was not far from the sea in any 
direction. After gazing steadfastly at the scene for some 
time, he turned to his suite and remarked with a laugh : " Eh, 
my island is very small ! " 

During dinner Drouot reported that a Neapolitan vessel 
had arrived from Marseilles on the way to Naples, having on 
board an A.D.C. of Murat. Napoleon pretended not to hear, 
and went on talking on other subjects, though the honest 
but tactless Drouot repeated the statement. 

On the 18th May Napoleon began a tour of exploration 
of the west of the island. He took with him Bertrand and 
Campbell and two chamberlains, two orderly officers, a 
captain of gendarmes, the Intendant, the Mayor of Porto- 
ferraio, the President of the Tribunal, several other officials, 
and the necessary large staff of attendants. 

On arriving at Marciana Marina (where he had been 
burned in effigy a few weeks before), he was met by young 
girls in their best dresses, bedecked with ribbons and crowned 
with flowers, who presented themselves in his path offering 

From an English aquatint of 1S14 


bouquets. Bombs were exploded, their noise being greater 
than what could be obtained from cannon. He was led to 
the church, where a Te Deum was sung, and in the evening 
there was a ball, which he did not attend. 

Next day he went up the steep hill to Marciana Alta, and 
thence to Poggio and Campo, his appearance at each place 
being marked in the same manner. The populace cried out, 
" Viva Napoleone, Viva il nostra sovrano.'' The good Elbans 
thought of Napoleon as their Sovereign, not as the Emperor. 

On the 20th the party embarked on the Caroline for the 
little island of Pianosa, about fifteen miles to the south. 
Napoleon took two horses and rode all over the island. 

On the return voyage he visited a small rock. La Scola, 
which rises to a height of 120 feet, within short range of the 
landing-place. He attempted to climb to the summit, but 
although given assistance he was unable to manage it. 
Campbell observes : " Indefatigable as he is, his corpulency 
prevents him from walking much, and he is obliged to take 
the arm of some person on rough roads." They arrived at 
Portoferraio at midnight, being escorted over the Elban 
mountains by peasants carrying torches, a service for which, 
by some negligence, they were not paid until their complaints 
had been heard all over the island, to the detriment of 
Napoleon's popularity. 

Pianosa is a small island, about ten miles in circumference, 
lying between Elba and Monte Cristo. A Roman ruin 
known as the baths of Agrippa recalls the fact that Agrippa 
Posthumus, grandson of Augustus, was banished to this lonely 
spot at the instigation of Livia, and after the death of 
Augustus was here put to death by order of Tiberius. 

In the Middle Ages Pianosa was inhabited by Tuscan 
colonists until, in 1553, Dragut, the famous pirate from 
Tripoli, who had captured a part of Elba, seized the Pianosa 
settlers, and carried them off as slaves. From that time the 
island was used by corsairs as a port of call where good water 
could be obtained, until the Emperor Napoleon himself, in 


1806, sent thirty men with two pieces of cannon to take 
possession. A British frigate, the Seahorse, attacked them, 
placing two guns on the rock or islet which Napoleon had 
just endeavoured to climb. The small gamson was taken 
prisoner, the fortifications destroyed, and the island aban- 
doned. It had not been recolonised. 

Napoleon announced in a communication to Bertrand 
that Pianosa, having no particular owner, " belongs entirely 
to the Emperor." His chief concern was that the island should 
not again become a home for corsairs. He sent for Lieutenant 
Larabit, a young officer of Engineers, and gave him in- 
structions for the fortification of the island. He was to con- 
struct a barrack and a fort. Napoleon pointed out on the 
map the positions he had selected for these works. He went 
to Porto Longone and saw Larabit embark with four cannon, 
ten gunners, and twenty men of the free battalion of Elba, 
commanded by Captain Pisani. They were followed by a 
number of workmen from Italy. A few tents were taken, but 
not enough for all the men, some being obliged to seek shelter 
in grottos or in ruined dwellings, or to lie in the open air. 
Discipline became relaxed and there was much quarrelling 
for the coveted posts in the tents. The party was provisioned 
from Campo or Porto Longone by boats, which were some- 
times prevented by stormy weather from attempting the 
passage ; then the men had to subsist upon biscuit or shell- 
fish, and they complained vigorously. 

Napoleon sent the Commander at Longone, Gottmann, to 
take command at Pianosa. He was a rough, quarrelsome 
man, of no education or ability. One of his first acts was to 
order Lieutenant Larabit to postpone making the barrack 
until he had converted a ruined building into a dwelling 
for himself, the Commander. Larabit said he had the order 
of Napoleon to build the barrack, to which Gottmann replied 
that he had the right to revoke Napoleon's orders with regard 
to the island. 

Larabit, however, definitely declined to carry out the 


Commander's orders, and continued work on the barrack. 
Soon afterwards Napoleon himself arrived, and heard the 
complaints of both sides. He brought with him Roule, the 
chief orderl}', who took the part of Gottmann, and had a 
violent quarrel with Larabit, which would have ended in a 
duel but for the presence and interposition of Napoleon. 
Larabit was instructed to devote the whole of his time to the 
military works. Later he was replaced by Monier, Adjutant 
of Engineers. 

In the end Napoleon dismissed Gottmann from his service. 
He had sent in a bill for the repairs to his house. In a letter 
to Drouot of the IGth December, 1814, Napoleon wrote : 
" The Commandant Gottmann demands payment of the cost 
of the work upon his house. To decide that we must ascertain 
to whom the house belongs. If it is mine, the sieur Gottmann 
must prove it, and then I will pay ; if, on the other hand, it is 
his, the payment falls upon him." This must be described as 
mean. Napoleon took possession of the island with everything 
upon it, but to escape the payment of a small sum for repairs 
to the house of the officer he had sent to command the forces, 
he pretended to waive his ownership of that building. Then, 
by dismissing the man, who could not continue living at 
Pianosa, he resumed the ownership.^ 

The precarious situation on the island with regard to 
provisions and the monotony of the existence, made all 
who were sent to Pianosa most discontented. Campbell 
heard one soldier at Portoferraio declare that if he were 
ordered to Pianosa he would commit suicide. One of 
Napoleon's letters to Drouot begins : " I am sending you a 
number of letters from Pianosa. I cannot understand the 
cause of all these complaints. I have given orders that the 
garrison is to have the rations of sailors ; they should 
accordingly have meat, biscuit, rice, and either brandy or 
wine. I have given orders that the Caroline should be sent, 
provisioned for fifteen days, and with a reserve provision 
1 Registre, No. 137. 


for the garrison for twenty days. Let me know if my orders 
have been executed at Porto Longone."* He also ordered to 
be sent 1600 rations of wine, twenty sheep, and two cows ; 
but even a sufhciency of food could not make Pianosa an 
attractive abode. The fort and the barrack were never 
finished. A couple of guns were placed in position on the 
rock La Scola, and an officer and four men were sent to live 
there in a grotto. Their lot was pitiable ; their sole occupation 
was occasional target practice at a mark on the shore of 

Napoleon paid three visits to Pianosa, on the last occasion 
taking his tent and remaining three days. He had still 
much of the spirit of the schoolboy. He played with schemes 
for a Utopian settlement upon the island. The land was flat, 
and he ascertained for himself, causing deep excavations 
to be made, that the good soil was of considerable depth, and 
well adapted for the cultivation of grain. There was also a 
good sward of grass. On his first visit he found a number of 
horses roaming about ; it was explained that they belonged 
to the inhabitants of Campo, the nearest port to Elba, who 
put them out to grass for several months every year. They 
managed to catch their horses when they came for them, 
by waiting for them at a narrowed path leading to the 

The island being well fitted both for agriculture and pas- 
turage, Napoleon proposed to found a model colony. ^ 

He would divide it all into farms and would provide the 
farmers with all necessaries. He would sow acorns brought 
from the Black Forest, and protect the young growth with a 
plantation of acacias, which would be destroyed when they 
were no longer necessary. He would plant the pine in those 
places where the soil was suitable ; he would compel every 
owner of land to mark his boundary by a line of mulberry 
trees ; he would graft cuttings on the wild olives, and plant 
a quantity of good trees. He would plant fruit trees in 

1 Correspondauce, No. 21577- ^ Pons, pp. 306-8. 


quantity, especially the kinds which have red fruits ; and 
wherever the soil was not suitable for wheat he would cultivate 
the vine. He would have a horse-breeding establishment, 
and a school for training domesticated animals. 

A certain part of the island would be dedicated as the 
special property of meritorious citizens who had rendered 
services to their country ; it would be used as a home for 
deserving Elbans. He ordered plans to be prepared for a 
village, with its church and other buildings. 

To carry out these schemes a settled population was neces- 
sary. Napoleon found a Genoese capitalist, with whom he 
made an agreement on the following lines : — 

1. The concessionaire will bring into the island of Pianosa 
one hundred families, not inhabitants of the island of Elba, 
who will establish themselves in permanent residence, and 
will devote themselves to the work of the island. 

2. The corn which the concessionaire will raise on the 
island of Pianosa must not, in any event, in time of peace 
or in time of war, be taken beyond the island of Elba, unless, 
upon the deliberate advice of the municipalities, the highest 
authority in the island of Elba publicly declares that the 
Elbans are not in need of it. 

3. The price of the corn will be, at an appointed date, 
fixed by the Government every year, in accordance with the 
price ruling in the markets of Tuscany and Romagna. 

4. The concessionaire will always maintain in the island 
of Pianosa the flocks and cattle requisite for these purposes, 
and the price to be obtained for these beasts shall be regulated 
in the same manner as in the case of corn. 

It was also provided that Napoleon would give to the 
concessionaire land of such amount as could be cultivated 
in two thousand days of labour, and he would provide the 
acorns from the Black Forest and such nursery trees as might 
be demanded. The concessionaire would endeavour through- 
out to fall in with the Emperor's ideas, and would be given 
a year in which to instal the families and start the enterprise. 


When the Genoese capitaHst failed him, Napoleon proposed 
himself to send forty families, giving to each head of a family 
a piece of land, with two oxen, two cows, ten sheep, and a 
sum of money. The olive ground was to be shared by the 
forty, who were to be free from all taxation for five years, 
but were then to begin paying back ; and they were to 
return annually a certain small proportion of the produce of 
grain, oil, etc. 

Nothing came of the various schemes for colonising 
Pianosa. The island was used as a grazing ground for the 
horses of the Polish Lancers, which were branded for identifi- 
cation and then turned out to run wild. Instead of the home 
for a selected number of persons of proved merit, Napoleon 
in fact made the island a penitentiary for wrongdoers, 
especially for insubordinate or discontented soldiers, who 
were sent to work there on the fortifications. 

The island is at the present time a penal settlement cul- 
tivated by convicts, which is much what it was becoming 
under the influence of Napoleon. 



^T Napoleon's request Ussher took the Undaunted 
/\ to Nice in order to fetch PauHne, but when he 
y % arrived she had already sailed in a Neapolitan 
ship. He was back in Portoferraio on the 25th 
May. He went with Campbell to the Mulini Palace. They 
found Napoleon playing chess with Bertrand, attended by 
two chamberlains " who were looking very sulky," says 
Campbell. No doubt they had been standing for hours. 
Napoleon took the two Englishmen into his bedroom and 
there plied them with questions, one following the other 
before the first was answered. Since his departure from 
France he had not received any first-hand reliable report 
as to the situation of affairs, and he felt that much might 
depend upon the answers to his questions. He wished 
to be told that the French nation was dissatisfied with the 
Bourbon Government, and Ussher was able to give the 
desired assurance. There had been riots at Nice between 
French and Austrian soldiers ; many persons at Frejus had 
asked anxiously for news of Napoleon ; the manufacturers 
were demanding encouragement in accordance with 
Napoleon's policy. Campbell says : " He showed the 
strongest exultation at all this, and chuckled with joy." 
When Ussher told him that Louis XVIII had said that in 
case of war, gouty though he was, he would place himself 
at the head of his Marshals, Napoleon laughed heartily : 
" Ha, ha ! The Marshals and the army will find themselves 




well commanded." Ussher proceeded to observe that the 
French had been guilty of great ingratitude towards him, at 
which Napoleon remarked : " Oh, they are a fickle people " ; 
and he said that the nation was dishonoured by accepting a 
King from its enemies. Ussher said that there was a general 
disinclination to believe that the Emperor had travelled to 
Elba on board a British ship. He laughed at this, and 
enquired whether it was supposed he had been taken to 
England. Ussher said many thought the English had 
seduced him, as he preferred going in their ship. " Did they 
say I had now become an Englishman ? " To the remark 
that he had many adherents in France, he said : " Oh ! the 
Emperor is dead, I am no longer anything," but he imme- 
diately added that his Guards were still faithful, and alluded 
to his popularity at Lyons. 

His eagerness to learn the news from France, and his 
exultation on hearing that the Bourbons were not popular, 
show that he was watching and waiting, not without hope 
that his opportunity might come. The Emperor was by no 
means dead ; that was the impression left upon Campbell. 

Napoleon had from the first an expectation, which in- 
creased as time went on, of a return to power. He was 
waiting for the Bourbon Government to make itself intoler- 
able, for the gravest discontent to spread in the army, for 
the troops of the Allies, especially the Russians, to return 
to their countries ; and he anticipated that the Powers 
would quarrel at the Congress shortly to be held at Vienna ; 
or that, if they avoided quarrelling, his chance would come 
when the monarchs had dispersed, and the Czar had re- 
turned to St. Petersburg. That would occur in the autumn 
or winter, and his own bid for power would be made in the 

In the afternoon of this day, the 25th May, the 
frigate Dryade, Captain de Montcabrie, and the brig 
Inconstant, Captain de Charrier-Moissard, arrived. The 
frigate was to take away the French troops, and the brig 

J '-J 

O n 


'•v ^ 


was to remain as the property of Napoleon, in accordance 
with the Treaty of Fontainebleau. 

Napoleon was now more than ever anxious for the arrival 
of the Guard, for with the departure of the line regiment 
he would be left with only the small troop of Corsicans and 
Elbans. He did not feel convinced that the Guard would be 
allowed to come. He paced up and down the terrace in the 
garden of the Mulini Palace, scanning the horizon for the 
expected ships. In the evening he had Ussher to dinner. 
During the meal a British officer, who had been stationed 
by Ussher at a signal station on a height, reported that he had 
seen seven sail in the north-west quarter, standing toward the 
island. " I had no doubt," says Ussher, " from the number 
of vessels, and the course they were taking, that they were 
the long-expected transports. Napoleon almost immediately 
rose from the table, and I accompanied him to his garden, 
which with his house occupies the highest part of the works 
and has a commanding view of the sea towards Italy and the 
coast of France. Full of anxiety, he stopped at the end of 
every turn, and looked eagerly for the vessels. We walked 
till it was quite dark ; he was very communicative, and his 
conversation highly interesting. It was now near midnight. 
I told him that with a good night glass I should be able to 
see them, for with the breeze they had they could not be very 
far from the island. He brought me a very fine night glass, 
made by Donaldson, which enabled me to see the vessels 
distinctly. They were lying to. He was most pleased, and 
in the highest spirits wished me good night." ^ 

Though he had not retired till after midnight, Napoleon 
was up at 4 in the morning of the 26th May, and saw 
with great satisfaction the transports in the harbour. A little 
later he went to the quay, where his well-known figure was 
visible to his old soldiers, as he stood examining the ships 
through his spy-glass. It was too early for the disembarkation 
to begin, and Napoleon took it into his head to pay an un- 
1 "Napoleon's Last Voyages," p. 100. 


expected visit to the Dryade, to test the feehng of the sailors 
towards him ; on boarding King Louis' ship he was received 
with spontaneous cries of " Vive I'Empereur ! " much to his 
deHght and the annoyance of the Captain, de Montcabrie. 
Then he returned to the quay, where the French troops of the 
line were drawn up under General Dalesme to welcome their 

The Imperial Guard, nearly seven hundred in number, 
began to disembark at seven, and were landed at eight, 
under the eyes of their Emperor. He was overjoyed to see 
them ; it meant a great deal to him to have their presence 
there to testify that he was indeed still the Emperor, and he 
now for the first time felt that with the Inconstant and his 
Guard he could offer a solid resistance to corsairs, or to other 
kidnapping expeditions. His delight was reciprocated by 
the old soldiers, many of whom rushed forward to kiss his 
hand, while cries of " Vive VEmyereur ! " resounded on all 
sides. As their Commander, General Cambronne, approached. 
Napoleon seized him warmly by the hand and said : " Cam- 
bronne, I have passed many bad hours while waiting for you, 
but at last we are united once more, and they are forgotten." 
With colours flying, drums beating, and music from the band, 
the Guard marched to the Place d'Armes, followed by the 
Emperor. Arrived there, they formed a square into which 
Napoleon entered. With evident signs of emotion in his 
voice, he said : " Officers and Soldiers ! I have been waiting 
for you with impatience, and I am very glad you have arrived. 
I thank you for associating yourselves with my fate. I 
recognise in you the noble character of the Grand Army. We 
will join together in good wishes for our own dear France, 
the mother country, and we will rejoice in her happiness. 
Live in harmony with the Elbans ; they also have French 
hearts." The men replied with vociferous shouts of " Vive 
VEmpereiir ! " and then marched to their quarters, some in 
the Fort Stella, others in the barrack of St. Francis. 

Napoleon returned to the quay and spent the whole day 


there in the sun, watching the disembarkation of the horses, 
carriages, and baggage, which was completed by four in 
the afternoon. Then he went on board the Undaunted to 
thank officers and crew for their skill and care during the 
landing operations, observing that the Italians would have 
taken eight days over what they had done in as many hours, 
and they would have broken his horses' legs, not one of 
which had received a scratch. He also thanked them for 
their attentions to him during the voyage, said that he had 
been very happy on board, and ordered Peyrusse to give 
2000 francs to be distributed among the crew. 

The arrival of the Guard made it no longer necessary for 
the Undaunted to remain as a protection to Napoleon. When 
Ussher came to take his leave Napoleon presented him with 
a snuff-box upon which was his portrait set in diamonds ; 
he said, " You are the first Englishman I have been ac- 
quainted with," and spoke in a flattering manner of England. 
Lieutenant Bailey, the transport officer, being presented, 
he thanked him for his care, and remarked how extraordinary 
it was that no accident had happened to the ninety-three 
horses, adding that the British sailors exceeded even the 
opinion he had long since formed of them. He then embraced 
Ussher a la Franfaise, and said : " Farewell, Captain ! 
Rely on me." Ussher adds that he seemed much affected. 

He had a genuine feeling for the British Captain, and a 
real admiration for British sailors, and indeed the British 
nation. Campbell wrote in his journal : " Napoleon speaks 
most gratefully to everyone of the facilities which have been 
granted to him by the British Government, and to myself 
personally he constantly expresses the sense he entertains 
of the superior quaUties which the British nation possesses 
over every other." 

Campbell now suggested to Bertrand that his presence 
was no longer necessary. To this Bertrand was instructed 
by Napoleon to reply that there was a clause in the Treaty of 
Fontainebleau which guaranteed the security of the Elban 


flag against insult from the Barbary corsairs, and this 
guarantee could only be enforced by British ships, on repre- 
sentations to be made by Colonel Campbell to the British 
Commander in the Mediterranean. 

Campbell asked for a communication in writing, and on the 
27th May received the following note from Bertrand : — 

" Colonel Campbell is requested to be so good as to send 
to Algiers the flag of the island of Elba, making it known to 
the Consul of His Britannic Majesty that the Allied Powers 
have engaged to make that flag respected, and that it should 
be treated by the Barbary powers upon an equality with 
that of France. 

" The presence of Colonel Campbell at Portoferraio seems 
indispensable, considering the great number of English 
vessels of war, of transport, and of commerce, which come 
to anchor off the island. 

" On this occasion I can but repeat to Colonel Campbell 
how much his person and his presence are agreeable to the 
Emperor Napoleon. 

" Le Comte Bertrand."^ 

Campbell sent a copy of this note to Lord Castlereagh, and 
asked for his instructions, which arrived two months later : — 

" London, Foreign Office, 

''Juhj 15, 1814. 
"Sir, — Your despatches to No. 21 inclusive, of the 
13th ult., have been received and laid before the Prince 

" I am to desire that you will continue to consider yourself 
a British Resident in Elba, without assuming any further 
official character than that in which you are already received, 
and that you would pursue the same line of conduct and 

1 Campbell, p. 242. 


communication with this Department which, I am happy to 
acquaint you, have aheady received His Highness's ap- 

"I am, etc., 

" Castlereagh. 
" Colonel Campbell, etc. etc."^ 

This letter is in the vaguest terms. The position of Campbell 
was anomalous. He was " British Resident," but without 
powers, and his only duty was to make " communications." 
He was, in short, a spy. He was at Elba, as Napoleon knew 
perfectly well, to watch the Emperor's conduct, and to report 
any sign of an intention on his part to disturb the peace of 

Napoleon was at first glad to have Campbell at Elba. His 
presence gave a certain countenance to the Treaty of Fon- 
tainebleau as a valid instrument ; it seemed to indicate 
a friendly attitude on the part of the British Government ; 
and it supported the dignity of Napoleon as a Sovereign. 

And there were real dangers from corsairs or other assassins 
or kidnappers arriving by sea. The Dey of Algiers made his 
intentions perfectly plain. Campbell was shown a letter from 
Admiral Hallowell to Mr. Felton, the British Consul at 
Leghorn, in which he said : "I have received a letter from 
Mr. MacDonnell, the British Consul at Algiers, wherein 
he informs me that the Dey has instructed his cruisers to 
seize all Neapolitan vessels, and those sailing under the flag 
of Elba, wherever they may be met with, and the person of the 
Sovereign of that island also, should any opportunity happily 
o^er the getting hold of him." The words in italics were 
omitted by Campbell from the copy he sent to Bertrand.- 

The presence of Campbell carried an implied assurance 
that in case of attack of this kind the British Navy would 
come to the assistance of Napoleon. 

1 Campbell, p. 273. * Campbell, p. 292. 


Napoleon's fleet consisted of the following vessels : — 

The Inconstant, named variously a brig, corvette, or brig- 
corvette, in fact a war-brig of about 300 tons, carrying 
sixteen carronades of 18, to which Napoleon added two more, 
making eighteen in all. He placed in command midshipman 
Taillade, who had served in the French Navy, and was at 
that time captain of the schooner Levrette. Taillade was 
married to an Elban lady, which gave him a local standing, 
and augured well for his loyalty to the owner of the island ; 
at least it seemed safe to confide the Inconstant to him, 
for he would naturally desire to bring the ship back to his 
own home. Napoleon gave him the rank of lieutenant 
and placed him in command of the fleet, with the title of 
Commandant de la Marine. Taillade did not prove a success ; 
his loyalty came under suspicion, and he was not a capable 
or zealous officer ; in bad weather he suffered from sea- 
sickness and remained in his cabin. He had as lieutenant 
a young Corsican, aged twenty-four, named Sarri, who had 
been in the French Navy as midshipman. 

Napoleon sent the Inconstant on several voyages. She 
went to Genoa, ostensibly to fetch cows, sheep, books, trees, 
etc., but the chief object of these voyages was to take emis- 
saries from Napoleon to various persons with whom he was 
in correspondence. The Inconstant also went to Civita 
Vecchia with the shot, guns, and other material that was 
being sold, and in this direction she carried persons charged 
with messages for Cardinal Fesch at Rome. The brig also 
went, in October, to Baia, near Naples, and waited there 
three weeks for Pauline, who was ultimately taken on board 
off Portici. This vessel constituted practically the whole of 
Napoleon's fighting force. Its complement was sixty men, 
but the number was always short, as the men had to be 
picked up at Capraia or Genoa, the Elban sailors being 
unwilling to abandon their trading and fishing pursuits. 

At first Napoleon supposed the Inconstant would require 
to remain near at hand to search the coasts for corsairs, and 


he looked about for a merchant ship which could be used for 
the voyages to Genoa and Civita Vecchia. He found a 
chebec of S3 tons, which he bought for £350 and christened 
the Etoile. She was made to carry six four-pounders and had 
a crew of sixteen men, under the command of Richon. She 
was employed in fetching grain from Civita Vecchia, moving 
guns and stores from Longone to Portoferraio, and such 

The half -decked advice-boat, Caroline, 26 tons, sixteen men, 
carried one four-pounder. This vessel had belonged to the 
French Navy, but being manned by Elbans did not leave with 
the other French ships, and so came into the possession of 
Napoleon. The Caroline made frequent voyages to Pianosa 
with men and provisions. 

Two feluccas belonging to the mines, whose chief business 
it was to prevent the smuggling of ore, were taken by 
Napoleon, and christened by him the Moiiche and Abeille. 
He reduced their crews from twenty men to eight. They kept 
up communication with Piombino, helped to provision Pianosa 
and to some extent continued to watch for smugglers. Early 
in 1815 Napoleon employed them for the mails, instead of the 
post-boat, and thereby effected an annual saving of £172. 

Napoleon had three barges, or row-boats. The Ussher, 
for ten rowers, was given him by Captain Ussher, and named 
after the donor ; it was reserved, as also the lighter four-oared 
Hochard, for the exclusive use of Napoleon himself. A third 
boat, with six rowers, was for Bcrtrand or Drouot or others 
of the suite. 

The Guard formed the greater part of his army. Although 
by the Treaty of Fontaincbleau, Article 17, Napoleon was 
not entitled to take to Elba more than four hundred officers 
and men of the Guard, it was known before he left Fontainc- 
bleau that he had authorised Drouot to engage a larger 
number of picked and devoted soldiers from the Guard then 
in attendance. The Commissioners of the Powers made no 
protest, and at Frejus Campbell promised that as many 


as seven hundred men should be taken on board the British 
transports at Savona. 

Napoleon's other continental troops, sometimes classed 
as a part of the Guard, were Polish Lancers. Before leaving 
Fontainebleau Napoleon had arranged with Jersmanowski 
for a squadron of eighty Polish Lancers to be sent to Elba, 
and forty more to Parma, to act as guard to Marie Louise ; 
but when he arrived at Elba he began to doubt the value 
of any such troops on the island. In his orders to Drouot, of 
the 7th May, he wrote : "I am waiting the opinion of the 
Grand Marshal to decide whether I should let Poles come. 
The opinion of General Dalesme is that I should do well to 
make them come, that they will not cost more than else- 

On the 12th he made Bertrand write to Meneval : — • 

" PoRTOFERRAio, 12th May, 1814. 
" My dear Meneval, 

" The Emperor is sending to Parma for the service of 
the Empress a detachment of fifty Polish Light Horse and a 
hundred harness horses ; I have had money given to them 
for their journey as far as Parma. I am writing to the Mayor 
of Parma to provide lodging, accommodation, and food for 
horses and men until the Empress gives orders on the subject. 
" We are waiting impatiently for news of you. 
" The Emperor is in the best of health. 

" Bertrand." 

Of the hundred and twenty Poles fifty-four were detached 
from the Guard on the journey from Fontainebleau and sent 
on to Parma. They were to be at the charge of Marie Louise. 
When they arrived at Parma, Marie Louise was at Aix, and 
there was no near prospect of her going to Parma. The only 
course for the Poles was to proceed to their employer, whom 
they finally reached at Elba on the 5th October. Then came 
* Correspondance^ No. 21666. 


1- " 






a I 
2 c 


the troublesome question of payment for their journey. An 
agreement had been made at Leghorn with the Mayor, but 
Napoleon declined to consider it binding upon him, and paid 
only half what had been arranged. He wrote to Peyrusse : 
" In whatever situation fortune may place me, I will not 
tolerate any cheating. You will therefore place 54 napoleons, 
or 1080 francs, with the Commissary of Marine, who will 
charge the Captain of the Post to hand them to the owners 
of the vessels which have brought the Poles." ^ The money 
was to pass from one official to a second and from him to a 
third before payment was made. Peyrusse paid what was still 
due, 1034 francs, as late as the year 1818, out of the Elba 
funds. 2 Having decided to allow Jersmanowski and his Poles 
to continue their journey to Elba, Napoleon wrote to Drouot, 
22nd May : " The Poles will be considered as horse artillery ; 
consequently Drouot will present regulations for their drill. 
The principal reason that has made me desire to have 
cavalry has been to enable me to get quickly to the 
batteries. "3 

It was not easy to make use of mounted men at Elba, and 
Napoleon was far from pleased at the arrival of the fifty -four 
from Parma. In the end he sent most of their horses to run 
wild at Pianosa, where they were no expense ; he used eight 
in his stable to augment his stock of carriage horses. The last 
arrangement was that ninety-six Poles were to form a com- 
pany of garrison artillery, and twenty-two were to furnish 
the mounted escort for Napoleon's carriages.^ 

Besides his Guard and his Poles Napoleon raised two 
battalions nominally of four hundred men each, one called 
the Corsican, the other the Elban. The Elbans were disbanded 
at the end of the year. The others were originally mainly 
volunteers from the French regiment of the line stationed 

1 Registre, No. 92. 

2 Peyrusse, Appendix, p. 143. 
' Correspondance, No. 21570. 

* Various numbers are given in Napoleon's orders^ Registre, Nos. 13, 
17, 74 ; Correspondance, No. 21G49. 



at Portoferraio when Napoleon arrived, but later this corps 
was composed chiefly of Corsicans. It was never at full 

Napoleon's military force was finally composed as follows: — 

Guard — 

Grenadiers and Lhasseurs . . 

. 607 






Poles. Mounted 





Corsicans (say) 


Gendarmes (say) 



In round numbers say 1200 men.^ 

Cambronne, Commander of the Guard, was made Com- 
mandant of Portoferraio. 

Mallet was Colonel of the Guard. 

Colonel Lebel was Adjutant-General. 

Colonel Jersmanowski commanded the Poles. 

Captain Roule was director of the Engineers. 

Captain Cornuell, director of the Artillery. 

Captain Paoli, Corsican, was in command of the Gendarmes. 

Filidoro was Captain of the Port of Portoferraio. 

Colonel Tavelle was Commander at Rio ; his force con- 
sisted of five gunners and four horsemen. 

General Boinod was Inspector-General. 

The name of Cambronne will ever be remembered in 
connection with the exclamation attributed to him in the 
hour of defeat at Waterloo : " The Guard dies, but does*not 
surrender." The remark is claimed also for another officer ; 
it would have been characteristic of Cambronne, who was a 

1 The original authorities do not agree, and Napoleon himself gives 
different figures at different times, but the general result ia sufficiently 


man of great courage and pertinacity. Born in 1770, of the 
bourgeois class, Cambronne left his home at an early age, 
and consequently did not receive a refined education, and 
was a man of rough manners. Napoleon gave him superin- 
tendence of " all that is police and security, consequently 
no individual will disembark at Portoferraio without a 
written permit, and until he has been interrogated, and until 
he " (Cambronne) " has ascertained what brings him to the 
island.' ' ^ This order was issued on the 29th May, immediately 
after the arrival of the Guard. Napoleon could not have 
entrusted the care of his person to a more typical Cerberus 
both in manner and spirit. 

Soon afterwards, on 22nd June, he ordered that his cavalry 
escort should always be inspected before service by Captain 
Baillon, to see that their arms were in good condition and 
that they had their cartridges. On the 11th September 
further orders were issued, that the orderly officer Roule 
" will accompany me constantly on horseback, and a horse 
from my stable will be given him, with two pistols ; he will 
command my escorts and will take the necessary measures 
for security ; he will consult with the Commander of the 
Gendarmes for the placing of the gendarmes at the points 
of passage, but the gendarmes will never follow me. There 
will be every day on duty to follow my carriage five mounted 
men, with their carbines and pistols loaded." On the Cth 
October : " Give the most positive orders that the detach- 
ment of cavalry has its arms in good condition, and a packet 
of cartridges." On the 9th September : " Give orders that 
the sailors of my Guard, when they are on board my barge, 
have always with them sabres, their muskets, and two packets 
of cartridges in their pouches." ^ 

With the Guard came Napoleon's carriages and horses. 
The dormeuse de voyage which Napoleon had used from 

* Registre, No. 2. 

2 The orders of May 30, June 22, Sept. 9, Sept. 11 (Registre, Nos. 2, 3, 
70, 73), witli tlieir evidence of Napoleon's fear of assassination, were excluded 
from the official publication of the Emperor's correspondence. 


Fontainebleau to Frejus had arrived on the Undaunted. 
Now were landed thh'teen more carriages. There was the 
herline de voyage, in which the Emperor had made many 
journeys, and two herlines de ville, used by him in Paris, 
Of the remainder Napoleon kept two caleches in use at Elba, 
having them out on alternate days ; one was painted yellow 
and red, and the other all yellow. To these were subsequently 
added the barouche made for the ascent to San Martino, and 
a caleche de chasse. Madame Mere brought from Rome a 
cabriolet, and Pauline brought a low carriage and two small 
horses. Madame Bertrand also had a carriage. All these 
were in the charge of Vincent, the chief groom. They were 
stored in the Arsenal. 

With the Guard also came an artillery wagon, and seven 
other wagons, which were employed to convey the materials 
for Napoleon's new buildings. 

The Guard brought eight of Napoleon's riding horses, each 
of them associated with some of the events of his great career. 

" Wagram " was a small Arab, dappled grey, which had 
carried him at the battle of Wagram. 

" Tauris " was a grey Persian with white mane and docked 
tail, given by the Czar Alexander at the Congress of Erfurth. 
This horse suited Napoleon exactly, and carried him, during 
the Russian campaign, at Smolensk, Moscowa, and the entry 
into Moscow, and also in part of the retreat. On one occasion, 
on the 25th October, 1812, when Napoleon and his staff were 
nearly captured by Cossacks, the speed and spirit of this 
horse were of great service. Napoleon rode it across the 
bridge over the Beresina, at the battles of Dresden, Leipzig, 
and Hanau, in the campaign of 1814, on the march to Paris, 
1815, and, finally, at the battle of Waterloo. Though not 
so famous as " Marengo," another grey which was at 
Waterloo,^ Tauris was associated with Napoleon in all the 
later campaigns and battles. 

* " Marengo " was captured after Waterloo ; the skeleton is in the Museum 
of the United Services Institution. Whitehall. 


Another grey, familiar to Parisians, was " Intendant," 
a big Normandy horse, of quiet manners, ridden by Napoleon 
at most of his great reviews, and on ceremonial occasions of 
parade, such as the triumphal entry into a captured foreign 
capital. " Intendant " was destined to be much in evidence 
again in Paris during the hundred days. These grey horses 
became as closely associated with the fame of Napoleon as his 
grey overcoat and his hat. In battle pictures the Emperor 
is usually on the back of a grey horse. Napoleon was a 
master of the art of theatrical display, and would always 
use a grey horse when he wished to make an impression. 

A horse which carried him often and well was a big chestnut 
"Roitelet," from an English sire and French dam, given to 
Napoleon by his stepson, Eugene de Beauharnais. Napoleon 
at first took a dislike to this horse, because at Schonbrunn in 
1803, at a review, it carried him into the ranks of the Guard, 
causing injuries to some of the men. But during the retreat 
from Russia he was glad to ride it, as it did not slip on the ice 
like the other horses. At Liitzen, when Napoleon was on its 
back, a bullet shot off some of its hair, which never grew 
again over the spot. When Napoleon visited his stables at 
Elba, he would look at the place and, giving the horse a lump 
of sugar, say : " Eh, we escaped nicely that time, both of us." 

"Montevideo," a bay from South Africa with flowing 
mane and tail, had been used in Spain. Well-mannered, this 
horse was reserved at Elba for Marie Louise. 

" Emir," a Turk, with flowing black mane and tail, had 
been used in Spain, and in 1814. 

" Gonzalve," a big Spanish bay, with flowing mane and 
tail, was ridden by Napoleon in Spain, and in 1814 at Brienne. 

Two small Corsican horses were bought for climbing the 
rough places on the hills. In the regulations he issued on the 
22nd June, Napoleon ordered that the Corsican horses were 
not to receive more than a half -ration of food each. " The 
five mules," proceeds the order, " will be all five provided 
with pack saddles ; none of them with riding saddles ; they 


will be divided into two brigades : one of three mules and a 
small horse, the other of two mules and a small horse." ^ 

Here is another regulation : " You will have given out 
of the account for the building of Saint Martin, half a bushel 
of oats as gratuity " {en gratification) " to the horses em- 
ployed upon the transport of materials." 

And this is another division into minute brigades : " This 
is the number of saddle horses required per day : one horse 
is enough for me ; one for the officer in command of the 
cavalry which may be accompanying me, one for the groom 
(these will not be native horses) ; one for the orderly officer, 
one for my chasseur (these two will be native horses). To 
form three brigades there will be needed, therefore, nine 
French horses and six native horses. These six native horses 
will cost me in provender only as much as three " (French 
horses). 2 

Less than two years had elapsed since the Emperor had 
led an army of half a million men across Europe. He was 
now forming brigades consisting of two mules and a Corsican 
horse, three mules and a Corsican horse, three French horses 
and two Elban horses. Thus with nine French horses, six 
Elban, two Corsican, and five mules, he was in a position 
to create five brigades. One would say that his mind was 
affected were it not that he had shown the same tendency 
ever since the Moscow disaster. He gave orders then for the 
movement of corps of troops which he knew existed only in 
his own imagination. He would place a Marshal of the Em- 
pire in command, and if the Marshal protested that he was 
not in fact given any soldiers, the reply he got was : " Would 
you deprive me of my peace of mind ? " It was with the 
deliberate intention of deceiving himself that he made use 
of the word " brigade." A conscientious acceptance of facts 
might have unhinged the brain. By refusing to admit his 
losses he contrived to i:)reserve a certain amount of mental 

1 Registre, No. 5. ^ Registre^ Nos. 16, 74. 


There were two riding horses for Bertrand, two for Drouot, 
and eleven for the suite, making twenty-five riding horses 
in all. For harness work there was a team of eight bays 
for the great state coach, never used at Elba, where it was 
quite out of place ; four teams of six horses for the berlines ; 
three teams of four in regular work ; four bay carriage horses 
for the town, required for visitors or the suite ; four teams of 
six for the wagons ; and five mules, making seventy-seven 
altogether, and a grand total of one hundred and two horses 
for riding and driving. 

For stables Napoleon used the salt warehouses of the salt 
contractor, Signor Senno. He had them properly paved, 
well lighted by windows looking on to the sea, and arranged 
with mangers on each side of a broad central path. They 
abutted on to a big shed where the chargers of the Polish 
Lancers were placed. There were also harness-rooms on a 
large scale. 

Altogether there were forty-two persons employed in 
connection with the horses and carriages, including the two 
grooms and three coachmen required for Madame Mere, 
Princess Pauline, and Madame Bertrand, when these ladies 
had arrived on the island. 

Napoleon's carriages were gilded and marked with the 
Imperial arms. The postilions wore green coats with green 
buttons, a red vest with gold braid, and a round hat with 
gold braid. The simple Elbans, for whom even an ordinary 
one-horse carriage was a rare sight, were astonished at all 
this grandeur. 

Napoleon's standing order to the stables was : " The 
harness will always be ready for two carri^ages with six horses 
each, in case they might be required." They would seldom 
be brought out, as he knew very well, but he could not 
dispense with the fantastic illusions he obtained when 
giving such orders. 



ON the 31st May the NeapoUtan warship Laeiitia 
brought to Portoferraio Napoleon's favourite 
sister, the beautiful Pauline. She was still in poor 
health, and had to be carried in a sedan-chair 
from the quay to the Mulini Palace. Napoleon had hired 
for her a house within a few yards of his own, belonging to 
Vantini, one of his chamberlains, at a rental of £8 per month ; 
but it was being repaired, and Pauline did not take a fancy 
to it. Napoleon found room for her in the Mulini, but men 
were at work there also, and Pauline's nerves could not endure 
the noise they made. She went on to Naples on the 2nd June, 
promising to return later. 

News came of the death of Josephine, which occurred on 
the 29th May at Malmaison. She had received the King of 
Prussia to dinner on the 24th, though suffering from a sore 
throat ; on the 26th she was so much worse that the Czar 
sent his physician to attend upon her. Her daughter Queen 
Hortense was with her at the end. The funeral ceremonies 
took place in the parish church of Ruelle, and were conducted 
with great pomp, a number of distinguished generals being 
present from the Allied armies. Napoleon had been at one 
time warmly attached to her, and was much distressed at 
the news. Josephine had been willing to join him at Elba, 
but pride as well as policy made it impossible for him to 
abandon the Imperial House of Austria. 


< 5 

r-^ — 

— c 

% 5 



At this time there was in the harbour of Portoferraio 
a British merchant ship from Malta, which before the fall 
of the Empire had been captured by a privateer from Porto- 
ferraio and brought in. After Napoleon's arrival the Board 
of Health at Leghorn sent an application for the ship to be 
brought to Leghorn to undergo quarantine. There existed 
a long-standing feud between Portoferraio and Leghorn, and 
Napoleon's answer was to disembark the cargo and place 
it under a guard on the beach. Leghorn put Elba into a 
quarantine of twenty-five days, which was at once imitated 
by Genoa, Marseilles, Corsica, and very generally throughout 
the Mediterranean. Napoleon thereupon sent for Captain 
Roule of the Engineers, and ordered him to erect a lazaretto 
at the further end of the bay. Portoferraio being reached 
from the east before Leghorn, he expected his quarantine 
station in a magnificent natural harbour, far superior to that 
of Leghorn, to supersede the Tuscan port, and thus attract 
a large amount of shipping. The lazaretto was accordingly 
begun by Roule on a grand scale under the instructions of 
Napoleon, who watched its progress Avith great interest. 
In the meantime Elba was in general Mediterranean quaran- 
tine, cut off from normal relations with the rest of the 

When the inconvenience and loss thereby occasioned to 
Napoleon himself, as well as to every other inhabitant of the 
island, had been sufficiently experienced, the Emperor asked 
Campbell to go to Leghorn and make certain representations, 
as from the Intendant-General of Elba. Campbell willingly 
complied, and on arrival at Leghorn, the necessary sanitary 
regulations having been complied with, he was permitted to 
communicate with the shore but not allowed to land. Camp- 
bell took no part himself in the quarrel, though he regarded 
the attempt of Napoleon to force the shipping world to give 
precedence to Portoferraio, with its fishing population of 
three thousand souls, over the great port of Leghorn, as an 
absurdity. Of course, Leghorn won the day, and Napoleon 


had to abandon the works at the lazaretto when half -finished. 
This attempt to dictate to the traders of the Mediterranean 
was a Lilliputian repetition of the Continental system, with 
its defiance of the shipping world. 

Pons^ says that Napoleon's original intention was to make 
Porto Longone the grand quarantine station, and Porto- 
ferraio the ordinary station ; and that when Pons observed 
that the communication between the two by sea through the 
straits of Piombino was not easy, Napoleon replied that he 
would excavate a canal between the two ports, across the 
island of Elba. Pons observed that the expense would be 
enormous, whereupon Napoleon said that it was to be sup- 
posed that the money due to him under the Treaty of Fon- 
tainebleau would be paid. Pons then remarked that the 
Directory had cherished the idea of making a similar canal 
near Hyeres, at which Napoleon said : " Did the Directory 
have ideas ? " He was evidently proud of this one. The 
necessary excavation would have been about five miles in 
length. The sum due under the treaty, £80,000 a year, even 
if there had been no other claims upon it, would have been 
utterly inadequate for the purpose, as Napoleon must have 
known, but he could not refrain from speaking as if he still 
had the resources of the Empire at his disposal. 

The 29th May, a Sunday, was the fete day of San Cristino, 
the patron saint of Portoferraio, and therefore chosen for 
the festival of reception to be held in honour of the Emperor. 
He went in State to High Mass in the morning, in his gilded 
carriage drawn by six horses, with postilions and outriders, 
his escort of Lancers, and accompanied by his staff on horse- 
back in their best uniforms ; the Guard lined the route. 

In the evening he went to the ball given him by the 
municipality of Portoferraio, in the same State, lighted by a 
great show of torches. The distance from the Mulini to the 
cathedral or to the town hall would occupy five minutes 
on foot ; a carriage at a trot would cover the longer road for 

1 Pous, p. 293. 


wheeled traffic in about the same tmie. Napoleon declared 
to Bertrand that he would have much preferred to go on foot, 
with him and Drouot for his only following ; that it seemed 
a ridiculous fuss to make, but that "if he had not appeared 
before the Elbans in all the splendour which they expect in 
a Sovereign, they might not have believed in his Sovereignty, 
and in his own best interests that had to be prevented on 
every occasion when it might present itself." ^ 

Thus Napoleon sought to justify himself before Bertrand, 
Drouot, and the other Frenchmen who had witnessed the 
Imperial State in Paris, to whom the Portoferraio efforts 
savoured of comedy. While he feared their secret contempt 
at the feeble display, he could not bring himself to dispense 
with such show as was procurable. It was by no means only 
for the Elbans. 

The 4th June, the birthday of King George III, was cele- 
brated by the British ships in harbour, H.M. frigate Cura^oa, 
Captain Tower, and H.M. brig Swallow, Captain James. The 
Royal Standard of King George was hoisted on the mainmast, 
that of Louis XVIII on the foremast, and the new flag of the 
Sovereign of Elba on the mizzen. The French frigate Dryade, 
and Napoleon's brig Inconstant, displayed the British flag. 
Captain Tower issued invitations for " an impromptu fete " 
at half-past five. A list of the persons to be invited had been 
obtained from the municipality, and an officer was sent on 
shore with the invitations, which he delivered at every door ; 
he was instructed to enquire whether any names had been 
forgotten, until every presentable man, woman, and child 
had been included. 

At nine Napoleon arrived, and was received by Captain 
Tower and his staff, while the sailors gave three cheers, which 
he acknowledged by taking off his hat. He went to the 
quarter-deck, where a circle had been formed, and the 
Emperor passed from one person to the next, repeating to 
each " the same insignificant questions which he generally 

' Pons, p. 228. 


asked on such occasions," says Pons. After the ball there 
was the usual supper, and Pons was disgusted at the be- 
haviour of two tipsy English officers. "It is incomprehen- 
sible how a people which has almost attained to the highest 
degree of civilisation can fail to cure itself once and for all 
.of this degrading malady," says Pons.^ 

The French garrison was now withdrawn from Elba. Most 
of the soldiers and under-officers left in a merchant vessel. 
The Dryade took the remainder, together with General 
Dalesme and his staff, and the higher French civilians. As 
they M^ere about to embark Dalesme presented them to 
Napoleon. The ceremony, with Dalesme's speech of affec- 
tionate farewell, moved the Emperor deeply. He was touched 
to the quick, and failed to conceal his emotion. When the 
ship was at sea he watched it for a long time from the terrace 
of the Mulini garden, unattended, for he wished to be alone. 
Before moving away he gave the departing vessel a personal 
military salute. The action was observed by the courtiers 
standing back at a distance ; it was in keeping with the 
broken words of farewell which he had found it so difficult 
to utter. He had lost his last connection with France, and 
was suffering indescribable sorrow. 

General Dalesme, with his officers and men, were now the 
subjects of Louis XVIII, and yet it had been for them a 
pleasure as well as a duty to confer on Napoleon at Elba all 
the honours and consideration which they would have given 
him at the Tuileries. Henceforward such tributes would 
come only from persons in his own pay. 

In preparation for his birthday, the 15th August, Napoleon 
sent Vincent, the chief groom, to Leghorn to procure the 
materials for making fireworks. Vincent was also to obtain 
wood for repairs to the wagons which had been damaged 
in carrying the materials for Napoleon's buildings ; and he 
was instructed to obtain a lady's saddle, as like as possible 
to the saddle Marie Louise had used at St. Cloud when she 

» Pons, p. 234. 


rode a horse called " Fauteuil." Vincent was also — and 
this probably was the real cause of his journey — to deliver 
a packet of secret correspondence to a certain individual in 
Florence, a former grenadier. He went on the Caroline, 
Captain Richon, and bought a lady's saddle, with a stirrup 
in red morocco. He paid 700 francs for the antimony and 
other firework ingredients, a sum which he asserted was 
never repaid him. He went on to Florence, ostensibly because 
he could not obtain suitable wood at Leghorn, and duly 
delivered his packet. 

Napoleon was expecting a visit from his mother, then at 
Rome. Algerian corsairs were from time to time seen in the 
Civita Vecchia direction, and accordingly Madame Mere 
travelled to Leghorn in order to obtain a passage in a 
British warship. She arrived there on the 29th July, at 
ten in the evening, with two coaches and six, accompanied 
by her chamberlain, the Corsican, Colonna d'Istria, the 
French General, Nansouty, and two ladies-in-waiting ; she 
had a passport from the Pope in the name of Madame de 
Pont. From Rome she had been escorted by four Guards 
provided by her son Lucien, and from Pisa by four Austrian 

She took up her quarters in the Hotel Grande Bretagne, 
Via Ferdinanda,^ now No. 19, Via Vittorio Emanuele, 
the last house but one at the harbour end of the chief business 
street, sometimes called the Corso of Leghorn. The former 
hotel is now let in flats. 

Campbell was at Leghorn awaiting the arrival of Madame. 
He called upon her at the hotel, accompanied by Captain 
Battersby of the Grasshopper. Campbell says : " I addressed 
her as ' Madame,' and ' Altesse.' She was very pleasant and 
unaffected. The old lady is very handsome, of middle size, 

* Manuscript Diary of G. B. Santoni in the Biblioteca Labronica, Leg- 
horn, 29th July, 1814. 

* The possessive form then in use in Tuscany, denoting the street 
belonging to Ferdinand. 


with a good figure and fresh colour. She spoke much of the 
Empress Marie Louise, of her being at the baths of Aix, and 
of her bad health, with many signs and expressions of 
great regard, as if her separation from Napoleon was 
not voluntary on her part ; she said that Marie Louise 
had expressed her intention of joining Napoleon in Sep- 
tember." Letizia must have known that she was spreading 
false reports. 

When, on the 2nd August, the party walked to the quay for 
embarkation on H.M. brig Grasshopper^ Colonna, his hat off, 
escorting Madame, Battersby and Campbell escorting the 
ladies-in-waiting, a large crowd followed in silence. The 
distance from the inn to the quay is only some two hundred 
yards. When the shore was reached, as Letizia was entering 
the barge, there was an outbreak of hissing, hooting, and 
cursing. ^ 

On the voyage Letizia told Campbell that Napoleon had 
been intended for the navy, but that when she visited him 
at his school at Brienne she reminded him that he would 
have to contend with both fire and water, whereupon he gave 
up the idea of following so dangerous a profession. She had 
forgotten the facts. The navy was given up for the army 
owing to a change in the inspectorship of the military colleges. 
It was not a voluntary act upon the part of Napoleon, nor 
was it occasioned by his mother's sudden fear of the sea ; 
she had known for years that he was being prepared for a 
naval career. No doubt she made the remark she was re- 
ferring to, as a consolation to Napoleon for the abandonment 
of the naval career. 

Letizia complained to Campbell that the Minister of the 
Interior would not give more than £24,000 for her house, 
instead of the £32,000 she demanded, which was merely 
what it had cost her. The Minister wrote that if she would 
not take what he offered she would regret it, to which her 
reply was that she would never give up her rights or her 
1 Santoni, 2ncl August, 1814. Campbell, p. 277. 


property, or bend to the caprice of an individual. If the 
Minister took her house by force she would appeal to the 
Law Courts. 

When the Grasshopper arrived at Portoferraio, Napoleon 
was not present to receive his mother ; he had waited all the 
previous day for her at the Mulini Palace, and had now gone 
to San Martino. She was much offended at his absence. 
She was met by Bertrand and Drouot and some officers of 
the Guard, the Mayor and other municipal officials, and 
Napoleon's grand carriage with the team of six horses, instead 
of the usual caleche and four he habitually used himself. 
She entered it with her ladies of honour, and passed through 
streets lined with soldiers, followed by another coach and six 
in which sat Campbell, Bertrand, and Drouot. The Vantini 
house is only a few minutes' walk, straight up stone stair- 
ways from the wharf. A sedan-chair would have been the 
best conveyance. 

The Vantini house, hired originally for Pauline, had now 
been prepared for Madame. She brought her own furniture 
from Rome. With her two ladies-in-waiting, she established 
an Italian household, where Corsicans in particular were well 
received. She lived a quiet life, going out very little and 
seldom inviting a guest to her table. 

Every Sunday she dined with Napoleon, and she spent 
many of her evenings in his house. Napoleon insisted on the 
greatest honours being paid to her. On Sundays, after his 
own reception, all the officials were sent to pay their respects 
to Madame Mere at the Maison Vantini. She received with 
dignity, as a true mother of kings ; many trembled before 
her who were not awed by the Emperor. 

Madame Mere was forty-three years of age when the family 
left Ajaccio, and fifty before her son had risen to the position 
of First Consul. She was never anything but Corsican, and 
now that France had dismissed the famil}^ she made no 
effort to conceal her preference for persons of her own 
nationality. She endeavoured to obtain for certain of her 


compatriots the administration of the mine, the salt, and the 
fishery. Foiled in these attempts, she made a great effort 
to obtain the agency for the export of the iron ore for a 
so-called Corsican company, which consisted of a few Corsican 
relations. She found out the amount of the tender sent in 
by a Genoese company, and then offered better terms on 
behalf of her Corsican syndicate. Napoleon consulted Pons, 
pointing out that the Corsicans were all of them relatives of 
his own, and that they offered more than the Genoese. The 
reply of Pons was crushing. He said that he found it almost 
impossible to get any return from the Corsican proprietors 
of furnaces for the iron which they obtained ; that the 
Grand Duchess ifilise. Napoleon's sister, forgot to pay for 
what she received ; that the Prince of Canino, Napoleon's 
brother, also could not remember ; and that it was there- 
fore most improbable that the syndicate of other Corsi- 
can relatives of Napoleon would ever pay anything. 
Napoleon burst into laughter and remarked : " That is 
what may be called plain speaking." The Genoese got the 

Napoleon not unnaturally considered that as his mother 
was wealthy, having saved plentifully from the handsome 
allowance he had been able to give her, she should pay her 
own way. He issued orders to the Grand Marshal that the 
rent of the Vantini House should be treated in the accounts 
as an extraordinary expense, which would not be renewed ; 
and he wrote with regard to repairs, on the 6th September : 

I see with pain that men are always at work on the Vantini 
House, which is all the more disagreeable seeing that it does 
not belong to me. It is proper that the note of the expendi- 
ture which has been ordered by Madame should be presented 
to her, so that she shall pay ; that is the only way of making 
her abstain from ordering anything more, nothing being less 
urgent than all this raising of walls and placing of iron 

1 Registre, No. 64. 


Napoleon was justified in declining to pay for his mother's 
iron railings, but he was rather hard on Pauline when later 
on she was living in the Mulini Palace. The Grand Marshal 
reported : "I have the honour to submit for the approval 
of Your Majesty the expense incurred for the eight blinds in 
the salon of the Princess Borghese. The cloth was supplied 
by the Princess. The expense amounts to 62 francs 30 
centimes." The decision of His Majesty was : " Not having 
ordered this expenditure, which is not entered upon the budget, 
the Princess will pay. It will be the same with all expenses 
of this nature which are not approved before they are 
undertaken."^ But if Pauline had proposed to take away 
the blinds for which she had paid, Napoleon would have 

Napoleon gave out that he expected his wife before the 
end of the month, and would prefer the celebration 
of his birthday to be postponed to the 27th August, 
the birthday of the Empress, but he well knew that 
Marie Louise was not coming, and afterwards decided that 
the fete should take place on his own birthday, the 
15th August. 

Portoferraio was determined to go to the utmost limit of 
expense to honour the King of Elba, though it meant a public 
debt for the municipality, and something like bankruptcy 
for the citizens, who spent far more than they could afford 
on the dresses of their ladies. " There were not," says Pons, 
" six families in Portoferraio whose fortunes were on a level 
with the sums which the unusual splendour of their wives 
cost." Some of the dresses then worn have been carefully 
kept, and are still occasionally shown to visitors. A beautiful 
costume had been bought for the fete of San Cristino, and it 
was impossible to wear the same dress again for the Imperial 
fete, for which indeed an even more luxurious dress was 
necessary ; so there was nothing for it but the money- 

* Correspondance, No. 21670. 


A large wooden ballroom was constructed in the Place 
d'Armes, and a triumphal arch was erected for a display of 
fireworks. A course was prepared just outside the town for 
a race-meeting. 

The day began with salutes from the guns ; then all the 
officials went to pay their respects to the Emperor, and from 
him they went to greet Madame Mere. Napoleon proceeded 
in State to Mass at the cathedral in his coach with six horses, 
as he had done at the fete of San Cristino. The Guard lined 
the square, but were unable to prevent the ladies from 
pushing past them to show themselves to the Emperor in 
their grand, ruinous dresses. They did the same at the race- 
meeting, for which horses had been imported from the 
Continent at great expense ; the ladies were determined to 
display their finery, and placed themselves on the best 
seats, as close as possible to the Emperor. The race- 
meeting was a great success, but the fireworks were 
spoiled by a high wind. On a triumphal arch were the 
words " A VEmpereur " ; the wind blew out several of 
the letters, leaving " le Pere,"" a most affecting incident, 
which created a sensation. 

Illumination was general, and the rivalry in taste and 
brilliance of design was severe. Pons records, with quiet 
dignity:^ "Mine carried away the prize. I say it with 
pleasure. I had eight windows in the front of my house. I 
had prepared wooden letters as large as the windows ; a 
wooden anchor of Hope, twenty feet in length, projected 
from the centre of the line of letters ; and each letter had 
above it a star which equalled it in size. The eight letters 
were dominated by a single letter, an A ; these eight letters 
formed the name of Napoleon. All this woodwork was set out 
with tricoloured lamps as close together as possible. As soon 
as it was lighted the crowd flocked to my house, and honoured 
me with repeated applause. The Emperor was informed. 
The Emperor went to the house of the Captain of the Port, 
1 Pons, pp. 230-3. 


which was opposite mine, and he gazed for a long time. 
Colonel Campbell declared that my allegory was too explicit. 
However, I knew nothing of the projects of the Emperor ; 
indeed I do not believe that at that time the Emperor had 
any projects." 



DURING her short stay at Portoferraio, from 31st 
May to 2nd June, the Princess PauHne made 
arrangements for the purchase of a country house. 
She told her brother that she wished to have a 
small property of her own. Napoleon thereupon, on the 1st 
June, went to inspect an estate situated upon the slope of 
the mountain San Martino, about three miles from Porto- 
ferraio. It was quiet and secluded, with hills on either side 
and at the back, and there were beautiful views of the town 
and harbour. The only buildings were a peasant's cottage 
and a storehouse. Napoleon enjoyed designing and super- 
intending architectural alterations, and it was agreed that 
Pauline should buy the estate, and that while she was away 
at Naples Napoleon would have a country cottage constructed 
for her. 

To clench the matter Pauline gave Bertrand a necklace 
of diamonds which was to be sold to provide the purchase 
money. Negotiations for purchase were entered upon. The 
value of such a property is calculated, without considering 
the buildings, from the return in grain, oil, and wine. The 
contadini, or peasants, cultivate the land, make the wine, 
grind the olives, and harvest the grain, and hand over to the 
padrone a half of the resulting produce. It was not till 
the 23rd June that an agreement was reached. On that day 
Napoleon gave Bertrand a bill for 56,000 francs, which 
Bertrand gave to Lapi, one of Napoleon's chamberlains, 




Scale j-4-hH- 




Drawn by 
Norwood Ycung 


for the proprietor, named Manganaro. ^ Napoleon also bought 
from time to time the adjoining properties. 

The small house which Napoleon made out of the storehouse 
still exists, and except for an inner stair and the enlarged 
terrace, it stands now exactly as Napoleon left it. The 
exterior is singularly unpretentious, with the plain white- 
washed walls, green shutters, and red tiled roof of the 
ordinary Italian villa. On each side of the central door there 
are three windows on the ground floor, and there are seven 
windows above. Originally the building consisted of a ground 
floor with a loft above reached by an outside stone stair, 
a common Italian arrangement. In this case the store being 
built upon a slope, the loft was on a level with the ground 
at the back. Napoleon raised the roof, as he had done at the 
Mulini house, and thus obtained a suite of rooms on the first 
floor with entrances at the back, the rooms below, with 
entrance on a level with the garden, being used for a bath- 
room and the quarters of the domestics. He enlarged the 
front, and added a second outside stone staircase at the 
further end. There was no internal communication from the 
garden floor to Napoleon's apartments. The inconvenience 
of this arrangement was offset by the increased security it 
gave ; there was only the back to guard. By way of further 
precaution the house was so designed that there was no 
entrance to any of the apartments occupied by Napoleon 
save through an ante-chamber. It is a curious fact that all 
the doors in the house are forty-five inches in breadth 
except the two leading to Napoleon's bedroom, which are 
narrowed to twenty-nine and thirty-one inches respectively. 

Wlien Napoleon drove up in his carriage by the fine broad 
road he had constructed, to the flat gravelled space he had 
opened at the back, he entered the house by an ante-chamber 
and passed through a twenty-nine-inch door to his dressing- 
room, where the valet slept on a mattress on the floor, and 
thence through a thirty-one-inch door to his bedroom. 
' Peyrusse, Appendix, p. 132. 


This has two windows, with a beautiful view to Portoferraio 
and beyond, including the coast of Italy, and looking down 
upon the little garden in front ; and there is another window 
to the east. The room is only fourteen feet by eleven. 
Having the whole of the upper-floor area to dispose of. 
Napoleon deliberately carved out of it this small space for 
his bedroom, and an equally confined space for his study. 
These rooms were smaller than those about which he com- 
plained at St. Helena. He built fireplaces, which are very 
unusual luxuries at Elba, in these rooms. He preferred small 
rooms, where he could be warmer, and perhaps safer, than in 
the larger apartments. The walls of the bedroom are painted 
to give the appearance of a tent, in allusion to the campaigns 
of the great soldier, an idea which he carried out to its fullest 
extent at Malmaison, where one of the rooms is in fact a 
tent within walls. The ceiling is decorated with small 
squares, in which are represented alternately a bee and a 
cross of the Legion of Honour. 

The door from the bedroom leads into the salon, which is 
sixteen feet deep and twenty-eight feet long, and has three 
windows looking towards Portoferraio. This room has a fire- 
place. On the ceiling are depicted two doves connected by 
a blue silk ribbon, with a large knot in the centre which is 
supposed to tighten as the doves become separated from 
each other — an allusion to Napoleon and Marie Louise. 
Besides his ever-present concern for appearances. Napoleon 
was struggling to keep up his own heart, hoping against 
hope that the allegory might ultimately justify itself. 

Beyond this room was Napoleon's study, fourteen feet 
by eleven feet, with a fireplace, and the last two of the seven 
windows looking over Portoferraio. 

The salon opens into the Egyptian room, the largest room 
in the house, twenty-six feet by twenty-eight feet. It is 
paved with marble slabs, and has in the centre an octagonal 
basin of marble, intended for a fountain, but the water was 
never laid on. There is a fireplace of an agreeable design. 


The main decoration of the walls consists of Egyptian hiero- 
glyphs of the colour of grey porphyry, which form the 
background for paintings of Egyptian columns, minarets, 
date palms, camels, an Arab encampment, a combat of 
Mameluke Cavalry, and Ethiopian women bathing. On the 
ceiling are the signs of the Zodiac, also in the prevailing grey 

Napoleon told Las Cases at St. Helena that " the best 
artists of Italy had competed for the honour of being en- 
trusted with the work, and begged as a favour to be per- 
mitted to embellish the building." That is an absurd 
exaggeration, but the ornamentation is not unpleasing, and 
does not deserve the contemptuous criticism it has received. 
The designs were taken by the artist, Ravelli, in accordance 
with the instructions of Napoleon, from a large illustrated 
work on Egypt, published in 1809. They are faithful to the 
subject, the grey background is cool and pleasing, and if the 
colours of the figures are bright, that also is Egyptian in 
character. Though evidently not the work of a great artist, 
the whole effect is, perhaps for that reason, agreeably Oriental. 

On one of the columns are the words, " Ubicumque felix 
Napoleo," a motto partly serious, expressing the capacity 
to take reverses philosophically, partly perhaps designed 
to reassure public opinion as to the Emperor's supposed 
intention to return to the great world. With the same 
idea medals are said to have been struck at Milan with the 
words, " Napoleo imperator et rex dominus Elbae ubicumque 
felix," but Campbell in spite of his searches was never able 
to come across an example.^ 

Opening out of the Egyptian room were two rooms for 
Bertrand and Drouot, or for Madame Mere and Pauline, 
without fireplaces. 

On the ground floor were the kitchen and the servants' 

' Pellet, p. 106, says tliey were quite common, but as none are now to be 
found the best authorities on numismatics suppose that the design was dis- 
cussed but never executed. 


quarters, and beneath Napoleon's bedroom was his bathroom, 
thirteen feet by sixteen. In it is still to be seen the solid white 
marble bath, twenty-six inches broad by sixty-six long, 
with a large soap-dish fixed in the wall, and just above it a 
painting of a naked woman — Truth examining herself in a 
small mirror held in her hand. There is a Latin motto here 
also, for on the mirror is written, " Qui odit Veritatem, odit 
Lucem " (Who hates the truth hates the light). 

In the corner of the bathroom an opening was cut in the 
wall in 1881, by the then proprietor, Signor Giuliani, for a 
wooden staircase only two feet broad, with a rope railing 
to assist the climber. No heavy, corpulent person could have 
mounted these stairs with any comfort. To reach the bath- 
room from his bedroom Napoleon had to go out of the house 
by a door leading to the outer stairs, and so reach the garden 

Napoleon's favourite drive was from Portoferraio to San 
Martino, and a pleasant excursion it is. He spent some 
money and the labour of a dozen men of his Guard in repair- 
ing and enlarging the rough track that he found in existence ; 
and he constructed a new branch, with a small bridge over 
a stream, to enable his carriage to reach the back of the house. 
Until this was completed it was his custom to drive every 
afternoon as far as his carriage would go, to the base of the 
wall just below the house, and mount thence on foot to the 
terrace and little garden in front of the house. A giant nettle 
tree which he is supposed to have planted grows there, 
obscuring some of the upper windows of the villino. The 
views from the terrace were superb, but one of the later 
proprietors was so ill-advised as to erect directly in the line 
of vision a large building, which he intended to use as a 
factory for making champagne from the San Martino grapes. 
The project came to nothing, but the huge erection remains 
there, unused and unoccupied, to destroy the beauty of the 
landscape, which was the great charm of the place. On the 
hot summer days Napoleon would sit on the terrace watching 


the workmen, or he would go to a spot a Httle higher up 
where there was a spring of deUciously cold water, which he 
drank out of a small metal cup. 

It has been questioned whether Napoleon ever slept in 
the Villa San Martino,^ but the evidence that he did so, 
though we do not know for how long, is overwhelming. 

On the 26th July he wrote to Bertrand : " Give orders 
to the architect that the three rooms in the Saint Martin 
house which face Portoferraio must be entirely finished on 
Saturday, that the windows and blinds must be then in 
position, and the rooms floored and painted, so that on 
Sunday we may send the curtains, an iron bed, and the neces- 
sary furniture. We shall then have there at once a pied-a- 
terre. If all this is not done the house will not be habitable 
when we need it."^ 

On the 30th he wrote to Bertrand that the raising of the 
roof of the Mulini Palace was to be commenced on the Monday 
following and finished on the Saturday : " It is possible," 
he says, " that I may come to sleep at Portoferraio from 
Thursday to Sunday,"^ and for that reason he ordered that 
the scaffolding was to be on the side of the court only, and 
the work carried on from that direction, so as not to disturb 
him when his tent was placed in the garden. 

The next letters are dated 4th August, and there are four 
of them, indicating that arrears had accumulated during his 
absence. In one of them he writes : "I send you the esti- 
mate of the work to be done at Saint Martin with the plans, 
that you may approve of them in the course of the day, 
so that the work may begin to-morrow."* 

It may be concluded therefore that Napoleon was at 
San Martino from the 31st July to the 4th August. While 

1 " Le Temps " of 18th August, 1912, published an interview by Emile 
Henriot with Frederic Masson, in which the well-known Napoleonic writer 
expressed his doubts on the point. He has repeated them in " Napoleon et sa 
Famille," Vol. X, p. 348. 

2 Registre, No. 34. 

3 Registre, No. 40. 

* Correspondance, No. 21G00. 


he was away the roof was being raised at the Mulini Palace ; 
immediately on his return the work at San Martino was 
pushed forward. 

Another date of which we can be sure is the 12th November, 
for there is a letter to Drouot dated : — 

" Saint Martin, 

'' 12 Novembre, 1814^:'^ 

There are other references to San Martino which show that 
Napoleon lodged there at some time. In " L'ile d'Elbe et les 
Cent Jours," on page 10, Napoleon says : "Before the end 
of the year Napoleon was passably housed. He had a pavilion 
at Portoferraio, another at Porto Longone, the villa of Saint 
Martin, to which he went sometimes, and the hermitage of 
Marciana, where he passed several weeks during the great 
heats." On page 23 : "A great many English travellers 
of the highest distinction making the Italian tour, came to 
the island of Elba ; they saw the Grand Marshal and General 
Drouot, who presented them to the Emperor, either when he 
was at the Villa Saint Martin or when he was at the pavilion 
of Portoferraio." Speaking of the plans for assassination he 
says, page 26 : " Then they would besiege the Emperor in 
his villa of Saint Martin." 

Peyrusse writes : "In the cellar of Saint Martin there 
was some wine. Being admitted, after my work with the 
Emperor, to the honour of dining with His Majesty and some 
Genoese, English, and Tuscans, he gave us in small glasses the 
honours of his wine, which we had to pronounce very good ; 
and as it was characteristic of him to give everything the 
appearance of being extraordinary. His Majesty was pleased 
to tell his steward to designate the red wine under the title 
of ' Cote de Rio,' and the white under the name of ' Monte- 
Giove. ' " Peyrusse knew and enjoyed good wine, and he 
complains : " These pompous names did not make the wine 
better. Moreover, the Emperor did not assist in the con- 
' Registre, No. 128. 


sumption of his wine, His Majesty drinking nothing but 
Chambertin. After dinner we went into the salon." ^ 
Napoleon was evidently residing at San Martino at this time. 

The furniture which was placed in the house by Napoleon 
was dispersed after 1815. Nothing personal to the great man 
now remains, except the evidence of his enjoyment of beau- 
tiful scenery in his selection of the site, the mark of his taste 
in the design and decoration of the house, and the fact that 
he spent many afternoons and some nights on the property. 

All the payments for the purchase and the improvements 
were made by Napoleon, but in the deeds of conveyance the 
name of the purchaser was not revealed. The natural result 
was that the property was considered to belong to the Em- 
peror and that Pauline's title to it was never suspected. 
Napoleon treated the estate as his own, and spoke of it as 
such, and it was always supposed to be his. But when he was 
at St. Helena he declared that it should be regarded as the 
property of Pauline, and told Bertrand to write to her to that 

On the 26th April, 1821, a few days before his death, he 
dictated to Marchand certain " Instructions " in which the 
following statement appears : — 

" I had in the island of Elba a small farm called Saint 
Martin, valued at 200,000 francs, with furniture, carriages, 
etc. ; it had been bought with the money of the Princess 
Pauline ; if it has been restored to her I am satisfied ; but 
if that has not been done, the executors of my will should 
have it transferred to the Princess Pauline, if she is alive, 
and it will become part of my estate if she is not then still 

But owing to the informality in the deeds of purchase 
Pauline was unable to obtain possession of San Martino. She 
died in 1825, and in her will she left " the villa and property 
of San Martino in the island of Elba to my nephew Napoleone, 
the son of the Emperor, my brother." 

' Peyrusse, p. 254. - Montholou, Re'cits, II, 533. 


The ownership, however, was still disputed. Peyrusse 
was appealed to, and he applied to Bertrand, who wrote to 
him as follows : — 

"Paris, the llfth April, 1829. 
" I reply, my dear Peyrusse, to the point in your last 
letter relating to the estate of Saint Martin. Napoleon made 
me write from Saint Helena to the Princess Pauline that she 
should claim Saint Martin as her property. At the request 
of Her Highness I addressed to her in 1825 a declaration of 
which I now annex a copy. The Princess never succeeded in 
making her rights to that small estate recognised. It appears 
tliat you have been applied to for information which might 
justify the conduct which has been held towards her. You 
were in ignorance, as also was M. Lapi, as to the real proprie- 
tor of that small property. The annexed paper will explain 
matters to you. Perhaps you have among your accounts 
the receipt M. Lapi gave me of the first sum confided to him 
for payment for Saint Martin. Receive, my dear Peyrusse, 
the assurance of my affectionate sentiments. 

" Bertrand." 


" I, the undersigned, certify and attest that it was in error 

that M. Lapi, who acquired, in 1814, the estate of Saint 

Martin and its dependencies, situated on the island of Elba, 

declared that he made the acquisition of that domain for the 

person of Napoleon, and I add, with all truth, that that 

acquisition was, though without the knowledge of M. Lapi, 

really made by him for the sole and proper account of the 

Princess Pauline Borghese, with the price of a certain number 

of diamonds which she had detached from her person when 

on the journey from France to Naples on the frigate 

Cuirasseau,^ and which her Highness placed in my hands 

at the time that she was leaving the island of Elba, giving me 

' Bertrand was mistaken. Pauline did not make the voyage iu the 
Curufoa, Captain Tower, but iu the Neapolitan Lactitia. 


at the same time the commission to acquire for her a property 
in the island. I certify in addition that M. Lapi, when he 
received the sum required in payment for the said estate, 
a sum derived from the price of the diamonds above men- 
tioned, gave an undertaking in writing to recognise as pur- 
chaser and proprietor of the said estate the person whom I 
should indicate to him, when he should be required to do so 
by me, and that, in consequence, the deed of purchase should 
contain a clause saying that M. Lapi would on a future 
occasion make known the name of the new proprietor of 
the estate of Saint Martin. 

" (copy) 

" Bertrand."! 

In support of this declaration there is a sentence of the 
correspondence : 2 "As for Saint Martin, the Emperor not 
having decided whether the acquisition should be made in 
the name of the Princess Pauline or the Prince,^ he will make 
the purchase upon a simple receipt of the sums advanced, 
which shall remain in the hands of the Grand Marshal." 
Again, in " L'ile d'Elbe et les Cent Jours," there is a passage 
which runs* : — 

" The Princess Pauline had bought vineyards and had 
constructed a pavilion or villa in the Italian style three miles 
from the town and in a charming situation ; she expected 
to become established there, but on her arrival from taking 
the waters at Naples, in September, her villa of Saint Martin, 
which had cost her 100,000 ecus, not being completely fur- 
nished, she occupied an apartment in the Imperial Pavilion ; 
the architects had prepared for her several fine chambers." 

Angles, the Minister of Police, reported to Louis XVIII 
on the 3rd February, 1815 : " The Princess Borghese gives 
grand dinners in her country house at San Martino, where 

^ Peyrusse, pp. 2.51-2. 

- (.'orrespondance, No. 215G7. 

^ Borghese, her liusband. 

* Correspondauee, Vol. iil, p. 18. 


Bonaparte often goes." ^ It is strange that the real ownership 
of the property should have been known in Paris and not 
to Napoleon's treasurer Peyrusse, nor to the Chamberlain 
Lapi who conducted the purchase, nor to the purveyor 
Foresi, who was consulted as to its value. 

In the end the title of the due de Reichstadt, the heir of 
both Napoleon and Pauline, was recognised. At his death 
in 1832, the estate went to his mother Marie Louise, Duchess 
of Parma, and on her death in 1846 it went as to three-fourths 
to Jerome, and as to one-fourth to the widow of Lucien. 
On the death of the latter in 1851 the whole was bought 
by Prince Anatole Demidoff, husband of Matthilde, the 
daughter of Jerome and niece of Napoleon. His intention 
was to keep the villa in its then condition, reminiscent of 
Napoleon, and to build close by a museum of Napoleonic 

The new building, which was planned by the Florentine 
architect, Niccolo Matas, is about two hundred feet long and 
twenty-three feet deep. The long front is ornamented with 
Doric columns and pilasters of yellow granite, supporting 
a frieze, in the metopes of which are alternately eagles, bees, 
and the letter " N." The interior consists of a long gallery 
supported by Doric columns, with a transverse gallery at 
each end. The floor is marble. The granite and marble are 

Here Prince Demidoff placed a very valuable collection 
of Napoleonic sculptures, paintings, and objects of all kinds. 
Among the twenty pieces of sculpture were the statues of 
Letizia and Pauline by Canova and the bust of Napoleon 
by Chauvet. There were thirty pictures, including the 
well-known " Napoleon at Areola " by Gros, and " Napoleon 
Crowned " and " Madame Mere," both by Gerard ; also 
pictures by Steuben, of Napoleon and his son, and Marie 
Louise with the child, and works by Horace Vernet and 
Charlet. Among the smaller objects were bronzes, busts of 

* Firmin-Didot, " Royaute ou Empire," p. 246. 


Napoleon on foot and on horseback, vases of Sevres porcelain, 
snuff-boxes, miniatures, medals, prints, books, autographs, a 
lock of hair from St. Helena, etc. 

The whole of this valuable collection, with the precious 
relics, was sold by auction in the Palazzo San Donato, 
Florence, in 1880, by Prince Paul Demidoff, the nephew and 
heir of the founder. Prince Paul also disposed of the entire 
estate, which, after changing hands several times, now belongs 
to Prince Camillo Ruspoli. 

Napoleon talked of making the San Martino estate produce 
much more than it had ever done. It should help to supply 
Elba with corn. His chamberlain Traditi, an experienced 
agriculturist, was summoned one day to San Martino to dis- 
cuss its possibilities. Napoleon spoke as an ignorant optimist, 
and Traditi was too polite to offer any objections to his 
dreams, until the Emperor in his enthusiasm said that he 
would be able to sow five hundred sacks of wheat on the 
estate. Traditi, knowing that one hundred sacks was the 
utmost limit of what the property could carry, involuntarily 
exclaimed, " O questa, si, che e grossa " (Well, that is a 
good one). The Emperor changed countenance, and Traditi 
at once realised his want of manners, and began to stammer 
an apology, whereupon Napoleon burst out laughing, and 
attempted to console the poor chamberlain, who often after- 
wards was heard to regret his cursed inconvenance. 

Napoleon received several shocks of that kind at Elba. 
When he enquired of a visitor from Piombino about the 
administration of his Sister filise, asking what the Grand 
Duchess had done, the reply was, " She made love." After 
an instant's surprise, Napoleon said to him in a severe tone : 
" I am sure you know nothing about that."^ 

When Gottmann had his complaints to make he waylaid 
Napoleon in the road, and spoke in such loud, aggrieved tones 
that Bertrand threatened to have him arrested, while the 
Emperor spurred on his horse to escape the insult. - 
1 Pons, p. 256. 2 PoQs^ p. 2G7. 


Napoleon failed to extort in Elba the abasement to which 
he had been accustomed in France. He encountered a sturdy 
independence of spirit which, in unguarded moments, would 
develop into an attitude of candid criticism to which no 
monarch of that day, and least of all the monarch of monarchs, 
had ever been called upon to submit. He was now an 
Emperor in name only, and the smallest of all kings. It was a 
galling situation, and one which he could not endure for long. 

On one occasion at Rio a sergeant, seeing the fat little man 
with one foot in the stirrup and thinking he had some 
difficulty in mounting, seized him in the most unceremonious 
manner it is possible to imagine and hoisted him, in spite 
of his struggles and protests, with main force by a violent 
leap into the saddle. " Never do that again," said Napoleon, 
in a severe tone. Afterwards he thought his dignity would 
best be retained by construing the act as the result of too 
much zeal, and he made the sergeant a Lieutenant.^ But 
such experiences were among the causes which led to his 
leaving the island. At St. Helena at least he was spared such 

Napoleon found that San Martino, though cooler than 
Portoferraio, was shut in and airless ; it was a delightful 
spring and autumn residence, but in the stifling heat of 
summer a higher and more open situation would be preferable. 
He found what he wanted above Marciana Alta, a spot which 
he had remarked when he passed there on his expedition in 

A little above Marciana Alta, at a point some 2500 feet 
above the sea, there is a clump of fine trees of the Spanish 
chestnut. Here there is a small chapel to the Madonna del 
Monte, and a small hermitage of four low rooms close by. 
Napoleon decided to take possession of the hermitage. 

For a hot- weather retreat the position was excellent. 
It was inaccessible to the ordinary tourist, who merely 
wanted to stare at the great man, " as if I were a wild beast," 

1 Pons, p. 285. 





ml-^ :^: y 



hP^**^*^^*^ '-i^saa-aj' »siVi»«vir ' '^P ^T^T'^ 

^H s^ 

^K 'V^^^^^Hj 

, .; 


'^nl^^^^^^ ^s-^aBWwBM^^Bp^^^^^Sj^^B 

1 - 


^^I^^^Ek.' «^I 



^HHHHH^ J ^; -J^ 




^^^^^^HB|^^~, . . _■ «-^ ■ ^^I'rV '^v -■■ "Jl-jH 


BI^BHk ^^^"^^Kg 

nL~i ' 



said Napoleon. There was shade and water and privacy. 
The views were magnificent, across the sea to Corsica on the 
one side, houses at Bastia being plainly visible, and along 
the coast of Tuscany on the other. A little beyond the 
hermitage and chapel there are some huge blocks of granite, 
upon one of which the marks are still visible of the cement 
and masonry base made for the flag and semaphore erected 
by Napoleon. The site was admirably adapted for a signal 
station, enabling Napoleon to get into quick communication 
with Portoferraio. Naturally enough the flattened piece of 
rock is now spoken of as the " Sedia di Napoleone," the seat 
upon which Napoleon is supposed to have remained fixed 
for hours of melancholy contemplation, gazing at the land 
of his birth just over the water. 

On the 23rd August, the day of his arrival at the Madone, 
he wrote to Bertrand as follows : — 

" La Madone, 23rd August, 1814. 

" Monsieur Count Bertrand, — I arrived at nine, it is 
five, and I am going out shooting. One does not feel the heat 
here, and the climate is quite different from that of Porto- 
ferraio. I find myself very comfortably established. 

" I require two shutters for the windows of my bedroom ; 
the third window is provided ; try and send them to me to- 

" Send me also two lanterns to put at the door of my tent, 
and a beacon. There are here three iron beds ; I am ordering 
one to be taken to Marciana for Madame.^ There are fifteen 
mattresses with blankets and sheets ; that is just what is 
necessary. Madame can come to Marciana if she wishes ; 
she will be comfortable. She could leave on Thursday next 
at five in the morning ; my big boat will leave to-morrow 
with the orderly officer Bernotti to bring her.^ 

' Madame Mere. 

2 The route was by land to Proccliio, thence by boat to Marciana Marina, 
then on horseback up the mountain, and finally in a sedan up the steepest 



*' Send off to-morrow one of her valets, one footman, and 
one maidservant, a cook and Cipriani, to prepare her house 
and her dejeuner. In the adjoining house Madame will have 
one room for herself, one for her ladies, one for her women, 
and one for her valets. If the sieur Colonna comes with 
Madame he will lodge in the town. It seemed to me that in 
the house there were all the necessary large pieces of furniture. 
There is enough linen for us both. 

" I think there are enough kitchen things for Madame and 
me ; I am ordering them to be taken down from here ; there 
are also enough candles and candlesticks. Her two valets, 
two footmen, one cook and Cipriani seem to me sufficient for 
her establishment. The kitchen can be established in the 
same house. 

" Send three curtains for the chamber of Madame, the 
rods are there already. Send us also fire-irons, tongs, shovels, 
etc. I think it is true, as we have been told, that we must 
have fires here in the evening."^ 

On the 26th he wrote to Bertrand describing Marciana as 
" unique in the island for fresh air and for water." 

When Madame Mere arrived she went to the house in the 
village of Marciana Alta, which had been prepared for her. 
Thence she walked, or was carried in a sedan, up the rough 
path to the Madone, and took her dejeuner with Napoleon 
under his tent. They were in a Corsican landscape of gloomy 
rocks, with occasional clumps of chestnut trees, and in 
places covered by the variety of shrubs so famous as the 
impenetrable Corsican maquis, the natural lurking-place for 
brigands and vendetta murderers. Around them were broom, 
heather, and bracken, with juniper and other aromatic shrubs. 

Soon after Napoleon's arrival at the Madone, on the 1st 
September, a vessel entered the Bay of Portoferraio, and 
instead of making for the inner harbour and quay, dis- 
embarked its passengers at the extremity of the bay. They 
^ Correspondance, No. 21615. 


were expected ; the ship had been observed approaching. 
Bertrand was on the spot with the Emperor's carriage and 
four, and six saddle horses, one of them having a lady's 
saddle. The passengers did not leave the ship till after dark, 
and Bertrand remained uncovered in the jDresence of one of 
them, a lady, who had with her a little boy aged four. 

She was the Countess Walewska, and her child was the 
son of Napoleon. Her brother and a sister were also there. 
The party drove off in the dark, and when they had gone some 
way were joined by Napoleon, who had ridden down from the 
Madone to meet them ; he entered the four-horse carriage. 
Further on they all had to ride, the Countess making use of 
the saddle which Vincent the groom had brought from 
Leghorn, ostensibly for the use of Marie Louise. So they 
mounted the steep path, each horse being led, and they 
were accompanied by men carrying torches, until the modest 
four-roomed hermitage was reached. 

Napoleon first met the Countess Walewska on the 1st 
January, 1807, when his carriage stopped to change horses 
at the little village of Bronie, near Warsaw.^ Among the 
crowd that had gathered to welcome the liberator of Poland 
there were two ladies, who became hemmed in by the numbers 
pressing on all sides. One of them contrived to attract the 
attention of Duroc, and begged him to extricate them, and 
also to place them where they could see the Emperor. Duroc 
took the ladies straight to Napoleon's carriage, and introduced 
them as desirous of expressing their homage. Napoleon 
received them graciously. The Countess Walewska thanked 
him warmly for what he was doing on behalf of Poland. 
Napoleon said he hoped to see her again, and the carriage 
drove off. 

Marie Walewska, nee Laczinska, was then aged twenty 

years. She was very pretty, a blonde, with blue eyes and a fair 

skin, the figure small, but well made. She was the wife of an 

old man some seventy years of age who had already survived 

1 Massooj F., ''Marie Walewska, maitresse de Napoleon I," 


two wives and was the father of several children, of whom 
the eldest was nine years older than his present wife. But 
he was rich, and belonged to one of the most illustrious 
families of Poland, and the match had easily been arranged. 

Napoleon met Madame Walewska again at a grand ball 
at Warsaw, and took much notice of her. He wrote her 
several ardent letters, to which at first he obtained no answer, 
until he concluded one of them with the words : " All your 
wishes shall be fulfilled. Your country will be dearer to me 
when you have had pity on my poor heart. — N." Still she 
hesitated, but finally gave herself to him under a promise 
that the sacrifice would be for the advantage of Poland. 
Henceforth, though disillusioned as to the promises for 
Poland, Madame Walewska was seldom far away from 
Napoleon, and finally, three years after the liaison began, on 
the 4th of May, 1810, she gave him a son, the little boy 
she had with her at Elba. 

From that time till the fall of the Empire she was in Paris, 
where she had a comfortable hotel, and all the advantages 
to be derived from her situation as the mistress of the 
greatest man in the world. Napoleon was interested in his 
son. In the midst of his strenuous exertions during the 
campaign of 1814, he wrote to La Bouillerie, the treasurer, in 
his own hand : "I have received your letter with regard to 
the young Walewski. I give you a free hand. Do what is 
suitable, and do it at once. What interests me chiefly is 
the child, and afterwards the mother." He wished to make 
sure while he could that the boy would be provided for. 

Napoleon was thirty-seven years of age when he saw the 
Countess Walewska. There had been a touch of romance 
in their meeting, and he was always attracted to her. She on 
her part, being still in her early youth, was at one time very 
much in love with him, completely under his influence, 
obsessed and overcome by his presence. " My thoughts, my 
inspirations, come from him and return to him," she said. 
" He is my happiness, my future, my life." She gave him a 


gold locket with a secret opening, in which was a coil of her 
hair, and engraved upon it the words : " Quand tu cesseras 
de m'aimer, n'oublie pas que je t'aime " (When you have 
ceased to love me do not forget that I love you still). 

She went to Fontainebleau after the abdication to see 
Napoleon, and remained waiting half the night outside his 
room. Twice he was reminded of her presence, but he gave 
no sign, and she had to depart without a message or acknow- 
ledgment of any kind. 

Murat was under obligations to hand over to her, as 
guardian to her son, certain estates in the kingdom of Naples, 
but had neglected to do so. The Countess travelled to Italy 
to obtain her due, and from Florence wrote to Napoleon on 
the matter. On the 27th of July he instructed Bertrand to 
reply as follows : " You will address to Florence to the ad- 
dress that Cipriani will give you, a letter to the Countess 
Walewska ; you will tell her that we have learned with 
pleasure of her arrival at Genoa and at Florence ; that she 
should send news of herself and of her son by the medium 
of the person whom you will designate at Leghorn. She can 
send her letter addressed to you."^ 

On receipt of the letter from Bertrand, the Countess's 
brother. Count Laczinski, went to Elba on her behalf, and 
took back with him on the 9th of August Napoleon's per- 
mission to make the voyage. It was to give an air of mystery 
to the meeting and to avoid shocking the Elbans, that 
Napoleon went up to Marciana Alta and received his mistress 
there. He went there a few days before her arrival, and left 
a few days after her departure. It has been supposed that 
the secrecy with which the meeting was conducted had for 
ils object to keep the affair from the ears of his wife ; but 
Marie Louise had always known of the intrigue, and it was 
certain that she would hear of its renewal, whatever pre- 
cautions were taken. The Emperor considered that, while 
he was entitled to have a mistress if he pleased, and his 
■ llegistrej No. o8. 


doing so could not be kept secret in Court circles, it was 
essential that the affair should be, in theory, private, that 
nothing should be done to give it unnecessary publicity. 

The result was that the Elbans believed then, and long 
afterwards, that the Emperor had been visited by Marie 
Louise. On hearing this Napoleon remarked : " Imbeciles. 
If it had been the Empress I would not have received her with 
so little decorum. I would have had her given the honours 
which are her due."^ 

At the same time Napoleon may not have been altogether 
displeased at the rumour. It was of advantage to him, as 
well as a consolation to his pride, that it should be supposed 
that the daughter of the Emperor of Austria was still a 
member of his household, though temporarily absent until 
the politics of Europe had been finally settled. If she had 
indeed been with him at Elba he might have contented him- 
self with the position of a titular Emperor, husband of an 
Empress, and son-in-law of an Emperor. Vanity at least 
would have been soothed and, possibly, ambition quieted. 

The Countess Walewska was therefore kept indoors, in the 
four-roomed cottage, during the whole of her visit, and she 
left as she had come, at night. Napoleon escorted her and her 
sister part of the way down the hill. She was met at Marciana 
Marina by her brother, with a ship, but the sea was too rough 
for embarkation there, and the party of four had to cross 
the mountains, in the darkness and a howling wind, to Porto 
Longone. It must have been a terrible journey. Napoleon 
was so alarmed by the gale that he sent down an orderly 
to Marciana Marina to counter-order the departure, but he 
arrived too late. At Porto Longone it was possible to reach 
the ship, and the Countess insisted on immediate departure 
in spite of the protests of all the local authorities, who 
declared the venture too perilous. When one remembers 
what a burrasca means in those parts, the determination 
of the Countess to risk the storm gives evidence of unusual 
' Livi, "Napoleone all' isola d' Elba," p. 101. 


courage, and complete submission to the will of Napoleon. 
She carried with her further orders from Napoleon to Murat 
to restore to her son the estates Napoleon had intended for 
him ; and Murat finally complied. ^ 

In 1815 Madame Walewska was one of the first to hurry 
to Paris to salute the Emperor, and she was well received. 
After Waterloo she went to Malmaison to see him for the 
last time. Financial considerations may again have had 
their influence upon her, and the ardour of her devotion 
may have waned, but there was still on both sides some feeling 
of romance in their relations. But when Napoleon had finally 
left Europe, her husband being dead, the Countess married, 
in 1816, a cousin of the Emperor's, General Ornano. Napoleon 
at St. Helena was much distressed when he received the news. 
He had hoped that the Polish lady, who had come closer 
to his heart than any woman since the early years of his 
delirium for Josephine, would have remained true to him. 
But even she had given up the St. Helena captive as a being 
practically dead. In the instructions to his testamentary 
executors, dictated on the 24th April, 1821, Napoleon said : 
" I desire that Alexandre Walewski shall be reared in the 
service of France in the army." This son of Napoleon became 
the well-known statesman of the Second Empire. 

' Masson, " Napoleon et sa famille," Vol. X, p. 355. 



NAPOLEON had now an official residence at his 
capital, a country house, and a summer retreat. 
He thought it necessary to have residences also 
at Porto Longone, the second town in the island, 
and at Rio, the headquarters of the mining district. 

After the departure of the Countess Walewska, he left 
the Madone and went to Porto Longone, where rooms were 
made ready in the citadel. He ordered certain repairs and 
alterations, which ultimately cost £334 ; and of these apart- 
ments he placed the Mayor of Porto Longone in charge, 
under the style of " Commander of the Palace of Porto 
Longone." He was also to exercise the functions of hall 
porter, keeper of the wardrobe, and superintendent of the 
gardens, combining these parts for a salary of £24 a year. 
There was to be a caretaker at a salary of £8 a year, and a 

Napoleon brought his iron beds from Madone, but there 
was a deficiency of other furniture. He wrote to Bertrand : — 

" Porto Longone, 6th September, 1814. 
" Monsieur Count Bertrand, — We are in need of 
ordinary chairs for all our establishments ; you must decide 
upon a model for the chairs to cost five francs each, and a 
model for the arm-chairs and sofas at a price in proportion, 
and buy them at Pisa, to the amount of 1000 francs. Choose 
the most suitable models from those they make at Pisa."^ 

' Correspondanre, No. 21(530. 

2 a 



The chairs and sofas were to be common and cheap, costing 
no more than £40 altogether. 

For his fifth and last palace Napoleon took, without pay- 
ment, the home of the Administrator of the mines at Rio 
Marina. Pons writes : " The Emperor authorised me to 
prolong my residence in the Imperial Palace " (his own 
house), " but the masons were at work upon the apartments, 
and I could not get my family to sleep amongst the debris." 
Most of the visitors who were received at Portoferraio by 
Napoleon, or by Bertrand, were sent on to Rio with intro- 
ductions to be shown the mines. Pons had a special allow- 
ance for their entertainment. The small house into which 
he had now to move was not suitable for the reception of 
guests while the Pons family was in residence. A part}^ of dis- 
tinguished English visitors arrived one day, under the escort 
of the Grand Marshal himself, sent by Napoleon. Bertrand 
found that there was not proper accommodation for them 
in the small house, which they had to share with the Pons 
family. He reported this to Napoleon, who thereupon 
authorised Pons to return to his old house which the workmen 
had now left, and to reside there permanently during the 
absence of the Emperor. The small house could be used 
for the reception of visitors, and the administrator would 
return to it whenever the Emperor was in residence at his 
Rio palace. 

In a north-east wind there was no shelter for ships at Rio 
Marina ; anchors had to be raised and a refuge sought at 
Porto Longone. The wind would continue in the same 
quarter for days, when communication with the Continent 
being impracticable, the mining industry became dis- 
organised. Before Napoleon's arrival a project for the 
creation of a harbour had been considered, but abandoned. 
Napoleon was attracted by the problem. He went on the 
water in a row-boat and stood up to make the soundings 
with a long pole and, in the deeper water, with rope and 
plummet. The day was cold and he sprinkled himself 


plentifully with water, and as he was no longer very firm on 
his legs the oscillations of the boat upset his balance, much 
to the alarm of his attendants, who were relieved when at 
last he landed and went off on horseback, cold and wet as 
he was, for Longone. 

Installed in his Longone palace, he drew up a complete 
plan for the new harbour at Rio. He would make a strong 
mole of stone, and a jetty of pontoons stretching to a rock, 
with a prolongation beyond it, and he marked the sites he had 
selected for the sanitary and other offices. He also went care- 
fully into a project, which others had examined before him, for 
making blast furnaces to treat the ore as it was obtained from 
the mine, and so save the freightage for the crude ore, and 
retain the profit from the process of manufacture. It was 
proposed to dam a stream above Rio and thus obtain Avater 
power. Nothing came of these plans, either for the harbour 
or for the furnaces. 

There was a small rock or islet named Palmajola, lying 
about four miles from Rio Marina, in the dangerous waters 
between Piombino and Elba. Upon it a tower had been 
erected for defence against pirates. Napoleon went in his 
boat to examine it, and finding it still serviceable, gave orders 
for the necessary repairs, for two guns to be mounted, and for 
a small barrack to be erected. This work he actually carried 
out, and thus obtained a small but important sea fort, 
similar to the Scola fort off Pianosa. 

The forts at Portoferraio were also repaired, and a con- 
siderable number of additional guns were brought, with other 
military stores, from the citadel of Porto Longone. The 
main points were thus made secure. Portoferraio, defended 
by well-armed and well-placed forts, was very strong, both 
on the land and the sea side, quite capable of beating off 
a considerable besieging force in both directions. 

The small Palmajola fort would make the Piombino 
channel more than usually unpleasant for an enemy, and, 
moreover, it might in the last resort prevent interference 


with an escape to Tuscany. Pianosa, when tlie fortifications 
were completed, with its little seaport of Scola was another 
obstacle to an enemy, and also a possible refuge. Campbell 
was much disturbed at Napoleon's fortifying Palmajola, 
Scola, and Pianosa, and certainly these works, besides 
increasing Napoleon's powers of defence, also provided 
opportunities for secret communications and escape. 

Napoleon also enlarged the Land Gate at Portoferraio. 
Until that was done the opening was only large enough for 
pack-horses, and when he wished to drive in his carriage 
from the Mulini Palace into the country he had to make a 
long round to the Water Gate, and thence along the quay 
in order to emerge from the town. 

In 1810 a road had been commenced to connect Porto- 
ferraio with Longone. Napoleon made plans for finishing it, 
and extending it to Rio. He also ordered surveys to be made 
for a road to Procchio, Marciana, and Campo. 

But his first concern was to provide communications for 
his carriage from his Mulini palace to the San Martino house. 
Upon this road he employed a dozen soldiers of his Guard. ^ 
When the most important section had been made fit for his 
carriage he ordered it to be enlarged, that he might be able to 
drive along it at night without danger, and that two carriages 
should be able to pass each other in any part. For this pur- 
pose : " As this road is the most necessary one for me, I 
should not be indisposed to take for it the 4150 francs which 
have not been spent on the road to Procchio." - 

On the road to Longone some work was done. "As it is 
possible," he wrote to Bertrand, " that I may go on Wed- 
nesday or Thursday to Porto Longone, I desire that my 
carriages may pass easily and without risk." Of the Campo 
road he said, in the same letter : " I desire that my carriages 
may be able to pass in about a fortnight." And with regard 

' Letters to Bertraud, 3rd July and 25th December, 1814; Regit^trc, 
Nos. 16, 148. 

- Letter to Bertrand, 3rd November, 1814 ; Kegistre, No. 123. 


to the streets : " I desire that the streets of the town should 
be cleared of all rubbish with which they are encumbered. 
The architect will be charged with that. He will obtain a 
contract for the reparation of the pavement of the streets, 
the removal of the rubbish, the chipping of all the pavements, 
so that the streets through which I pass on my way either to 
the Land Gate or the Sea Gate, to the church or to the town 
hall, shall not be slippery, and that there may be no danger." 
Again : " The road must be paved as far as the windmill, 
as it is the principal approach to my house." 

He made it quite plain that all these improvements were 
for his own safety and comfort. Lie would pay only half the 
cost, the municipalities contributing the other half. " The 
expenses of the route of Porto Longone will be liquidated 
and reduced to a reasonable sum, and I will take the half." 
..." Give orders that the road from Procchio to Marciana 
shall go by Poggio. I will take half the expense and the 
communes of Marciana and Poggio will take the other half." 
" Give orders that work is also to be done on the road from 
Porto Longone to Rio. I will take half the expense and the 
communes the other half."^ 

As the communes were unwilling to contribute anything 
either in labour or money. Napoleon issued peremptory 
commands. " Give orders that the half of the funds which 
lie in the municipal treasury of Marciana shall be allotted to 
the construction of the Marciana road, and that something 
is given to the poorest of the men who comprise the corvee."^ 

The order appears not to have been carried out, or to have 
produced very minute results. " As for the 100 francs 
advanced by the commune of Marciana there can be no 
question of returning them," he wrote later to Bertrand.^ 
The Elbans concluded that as Napoleon wanted the road for 
his own use, he might be left to bear the expense. They were 

1 C'orrespondance, Nos. 21570, 215G7, 21582. 

'^ Letter to Bertraiul, J Itli July, 1814 ; Rep:istre, No. 18. 

^ Letter to Bertrand, 2nd October, 1814 ; llegistre. No. 86. 


not asking for improved means of transit. Napoleon there- 
upon pointed out in a letter to Bertrand that the Marciana 
road would be " very advantageous to the two villages for 
their communications." But this argument failed, and much 
discontent was aroused. 

Campbell writes, 5th June : " Napoleon continues in the 
same state of perpetual movement, busy with constant 
schemes, none of which, however, tend to ameliorate the 
condition of his subjects. He has ordered several pieces of 
road to be improved for the conveyance of his carriage, with- 
out any other object, and new ones to be executed, and appro- 
priating no funds for the payment of the peasants who have 
been hastily assembled on the requisition of the mayors. He 
has even employed his own Guards, who came from France, 
on fatigue duties, such as destroying houses for the improve- 
ment of his own residence, and working upon the pavements 
of the streets. This has given great disgust." " Napoleon 
appears to become more unpopular on the island every day, 
for every act seems guided by avarice and a feeling of personal 
interest, with a total disregard to that of others. The 
inhabitants perceive that none of his schemes tend to 
ameliorate their situation. The cries of ' T^ive VEmpereur ! ' 
are no longer heard." ^ That was written within a month of 
Napoleon's arrival, and the relations between the new 
monarch and his subjects did not improve with time. 

Portoferraio, though a strong fortress, was insufficiently 
supplied with water, and Napoleon spent some money in 
endeavouring to obtain water from the mountains, but the 
works were stopped by his order in January, 1815. There 
were two cisterns for the garrison of the fitoile fort. Napoleon 
gave orders that one of them was to be at the disposal of the 
inhabitants at a fixed hour, twice a day.^ The other he took 
for himself entirely. " The water can easily be brought into 
my garden, and I reserve it for my own use."^ He made some 

1 Campbell, p. 248. 2 Registre, No. 83. 

^ Correspondance, No. 215G7. 


important sanitary regulations for Portoferraio which were 
to be enforced by fines. ^ 

Regarding Elba as a fortress, the next consideration was 
the victualling of the island. In an ordinary season Elba 
produced grain sufficient for two months only. If Pianosa 
were properly cultivated a supply for five months more would 
be obtained, leaving five months still unprovided for. 

There is a piece of flat land on the south of the island, 
known as the plain of Acona, which in the time of Napoleon 
was marshy, but when properly drained would have been 
suitable for the cultivation of wheat. Napoleon talked of 
sending to Lucca for the labourers, the Elbans, like the 
Corsicans, being too proud and too lazy to do ordinary field 
work. With Lucchese he calculated that Acona could be 
made to produce grain to last two months. For the remaining 
three months grain would have to be imported. The chief 
agricultural export from Elba was wine. Napoleon ordered 
an account to be prepared showing the amount of wine 
exported in each year for the previous ten years. This was 
done, though the figures could hardly have been correct, 
as there were no reliable statistics available. They showed 
that the wine exported could be exchanged for grain sufficient 
to last three months. 

In these various ways the island could have been provided 
with grain for the whole year. But nothing was done either 
at Pianosa or Acona. Napoleon had enjoyed making the 
calculations ; he spoke of them to Pons as " this satisfaction 
of my heart." 2 Having obtained his satisfaction there was 
no need for anything further. Perhaps he remembered that 
his father had wasted a large amount of money, far more 
than he could afford, in draining certain salt marshes near 
Ajaccio. When Napoleon wanted to victual Portoferraio 
against a possible siege, he imported the necessary grain. 

Napoleon tried to induce the Elbans to grow potatoes, 
as yet almost unknown on the island, and he went among 

1 Correspondance, No. 21 507 ; Registre, No. 11. '^ Pons, pp. 297, 310. 


the small proprietors, urging them to cultivate cauliflowers, 
onions, and other vegetables. Pons writes : "I have heard 
the Emperor teaching my gardener how to produce a constant 
succession of good radishes, and good salad. When and how 
could the Emperor have learned that?"^ Napoleon may 
have understood both French and Italian vegetable raising. 
French gentlemen have always taken an interest in the subject, 
and Napoleon's father was a pioneer who imported French 
seeds into Ajaccio for raising new kinds of vegetables then 
unknown in Corsica. There is a list of them in Carlo di 
Buonaparte's account-book, ^ with the dates for sowing. 

Napoleon, like his father, was a believer in the value of 
the mulberry. He imported a large number of mulberry 
trees at his own expense. The cost of planting he placed 
upon the municipality. He pointed out that as the trees 
were to be planted in the streets, the town would obtain a 
revenue from the sale of the leaves, and so should bear part 
of the initial expense. Other plantations were to be made 
along the roads, first, of course, on the San Martino semi- 
private road. A few of these trees have survived to this day. 

Napoleon's father planted many mulberries in a nursery 
near Ajaccio, under the encouragement of Louis XVI. 
Napoleon, as a young Lieutenant, wrote out petitions 
demanding, on behalf of his widowed mother, certain moneys 
which his mathematics enabled him to calculate were still 
due from the King. The encouragement the Emperor gave 
to the silk industry of Lyons, and the hold he thereby 
obtained upon the affections of that great city, were thus 
connected with his father's mulberry plantation. 

Napoleon imported from Corsica a quantity of cuttings 
of the olive, and also a number of young chestnut plants. 
The olives were to be planted in the warm valleys and upon 
the lower slopes of the mountains, and especially among the 
vines, to displace the figs, which throw too much shade and 
thus prevent the grapes from ripening properly. The Elbans 
1 Pons, p. 291. 2 i,j tijg possession of the Earl of Crawford. 


were hard to convince, declaring that the cHmate was not 
suited to ohves, their real complaint being that the olive 
takes longer than the fig to become profitable. Napoleon 
argued the matter out with the cultivators in their fields, 
and was delighted when he had made a convert who would 
be willing to plant olives if given them for nothing. The 
chestnuts were for the upper parts of the mountains 
and the northern slopes. Napoleon also had great schemes 
for covering the mountains with pines from the Black Forest. 
He spoke of planting the oak and acacia close together, the 
quick-growing tree to be cut down when the slow oak had 
begun to require more space ; but nothing came of these 

Napoleon talked of making Elba a world centre of art and 
science, and proposed to return to the name Cosmopoli, 
given originally to Portoferraio in commemoration of Cosimo 
de Medici. It was a fine idea and one which he could have 
carried out. He might have made his little kingdom a home 
for all peaceful arts, exchanging the part of Caesar for that 
of Maecenas. He talked of establishing a factory or school 
for the exploitation of the valuable Elba marbles. He sent 
for a sculptor from Carrara to be placed at the head of the 
establishment. When he arrived, Bargigli by name. Napoleon 
at once impressed him as architect at San Martino. The 
Elban marble was handed over to his assistants. Napoleon 
bought some of their work and recommended it to others. 
There ended his scheme. 

He did not desire that the Elbans should learn 
French. He dismissed the teacher of French in the public 
schools and appointed in his place a professor of drawing and 
the fine arts. Bartolini, the sculptor, of Florence, was 
nominated, but the salary of 1200 francs (£48) was not a 
sufficient inducement, and he declined the post. No other 
person being appointed, the schoolchildren were taught 
neither French nor drawing, and Napoleon saved the money. ^ 

1 Letter to Bertrand, 18th July, 1814. Registre, No. 26. Pons, p. 144. 

00 K 
1 S 

fa "o 

O " 

O = 

< ^ 

O 6 


Nearly the whole of his expenditure on improve- 
ments was directed to works designed for his own comfort 
and safety. From some of it the Elbans also would derive 
benefit, from the paving of the streets, the new roads, the 
improved water supply, the planting of trees. But his first 
concern always was for his own advantage. He regarded 
Elba as a fortress in which he could find shelter, and an 
estate from which he could derive enjoyment. So he prepared 
for himself five residences in different parts, made roads for 
the passage of his carriage from one house to another, 
and strengthened the fortifications of Portoferraio, Pianosa, 
and Palmajola. The water was primarily for his garrison, 
the roads were personal or strategic. 

In care and consideration for those under his charge 
Napoleon was not up to the standard of his time, for even 
his contemporaries, and the ignorant Elbans themselves, 
were struck by the purely selfish nature of his undertakings. 
We are not entitled to assume that if he had remained longer 
at Elba, and had been free from all pecuniary uncertainties, 
there would have been any substantial change in the prin- 
ciples by which he was governed. He would have continued 
as he had begun. He would have built bigger palaces, and 
would for ever have been repairing and changing them ; he 
would have had a larger army, stronger forts, and a more 
powerful navy ; he would have constructed more strategic 
roads ; he would have obtained grain for the garrison by 
purchase ; he would have increased the number of officials 
connected with the Government ; he would have had more 
personal attendants with high-sounding titles, and a greater 
display of Royalty. Any advantage that the Elbans might 
have derived from his presence among them would have been 



IT was generally believed that Napoleon's resources were 
insufficient for his needs. Campbell reported, 12th 
November, 1814 : — 

" If pecuniary difficulties press upon him much 
longer, so as to prevent his vanity from being satisfied by 
the ridiculous establishment of a Court which he has hitherto 
supported in Elba, and if his doubts are not reassured, I 
think he is capable of crossing into Piombino with his troops, 
or any other eccentricity. But if his residence in Elba and 
his income are secured to him, I think he will pass the rest 
of his life there in tranquillity." Campbell notes the sale by 
Napoleon of the ten months' provisions which had been left 
in store by the French troops ; makes several references to 
the sale of the guns, shot, and shell found in the fortress of 
Porto Longone ; and reports that Madame Bertrand said 
to him that Napoleon " has scarcely a shilling, not even a 
ring to present to anyone, and his situation is frightful." 
He continues, 18th November : " There has been a further 
reduction of servants and other expenses of Napoleon's 
household for the sake of economy." 3rd December : " In 
order to raise the money he has, within the last few days, sold 
a large public building in this town, formerly used as a 
soldiers' barrack, for 1500 francs." December 10th : " The 
Intendant-General of the island of Elba informs me that 
Napoleon's troops and vessels cost him one million of francs 
jDcr year, while all his sources of revenue, including the 



contributions, will not net four hundred thousand this year. 
In addition to the discharging of a number of servants 
lately he has reduced to one half the salary of his surgeon, 
treasurer, and some others who hold civil appointments in 
his household." 27th December : " It is reported in this 
island, and at Leghorn, that proposals have been made by 
Napoleon to the Duke of Tuscany for the sale of his brass 
guns. He has lately sold some provisions which were in 
store in the fort of Longone." February : " For some time 
past Napoleon has suspended his improvements, as regards 
roads, and the finish of his country residence. This is, I 
think, on account of the expense. Some of the roads, as 
well as a bridge, built entirely for his own use, and uncon- 
nected with the public, have yet by his order been paid for 
entirely by the inhabitants.^ A Council of State was 
lately held at Portoferraio to determine whether the town 
house {Hotel de Ville) can be sold for his private emolument, 
but as the opinions were divided the project has not yet 
been carried into execution." ^ 

Napoleon's proposal to sell the town hall, as the property 
of the Government, that is himself, shows how catholic 
was his estimate of what belonged to him. One of his first 
orders was to make Lapi " Director of the Domains, that is 
to say, the forest of Giove, the two forests near Volterraio, 
the property of Saint Martin, and all the workable and cul- 
tivable lands which surround the salt marshes and other 
parcels of land on the island which belong to me and to 
which I am entitled, finally all that relates to the domain of 
Pianosa." Lapi is instructed to " discover and take over all 
other property on the island which belongs to the Emperor, 
examine all claims, re-enter into possession of all that is 
vague or may have been usurped."^ 

^ Campbell was mistaken. Napoleon had to bear most of the expense 
liimself. Campbell's remark shows the feeling on the island at Napoleon's 
effort to obtain contributions. 

- Campbell, pp. 31S), 321, 325, 2,U, 348^ 354. 

^ Correapondance^ No. 215G7. 


All forests he considered to belong to him, and all useful 
land in the neighbourhood of the salt marshes, and any person 
who had the temerity to claim a share in such property 
would have to prove his case. 

He writes on the 10th September : — 

" I desire to know whether the peninsula of Insola belongs 
to me, as many persons say, and what is the size of the 
isthmus ; I would desire to close it so as to be able to place 
there boars and deer." 

Three days later he wrote to Bertrand : — 

'* I desire to acquire the Capo di Stella for a shooting 
preserve. I desire to close, as soon as possible, the isthmus, 
which I beg you to have completely walled in."^ 

He ordered an estimate to be made of the cost of the wall, 
with a good ditch in front and a guard house. The isthmus 
was a thin tongue of land projecting into the sea, on the south 
of the island. Napoleon had already " acquired " the plain 
of Acona, which adjoined the Stella promontory. There is 
no reason to suppose this land belonged to him, more than 
any other land, but it was worth little and the proprietors 
had to submit to the spoliation, which was theoretical only ; 
for the fields of wheat and preserves of game were among 
the numerous visions with which Napoleon amused himself, 
and which came to no practical result. Pons says that 
although Napoleon did not believe in the word impossible, 
he failed to obtain so much as a rabbit, though he sent to 
Corsica for that wild animal. 

To Drouot he wrote on the 7th May : " The sub-prefect 
has knowledge of a store of wheat belonging to the Grand 
Duchess of Tuscany. Some of it has been sold, some of it 
remains. The money has been placed in the hands of the 

1 Correspondance, Nos. 21634, 21640. 


treasurer. A claim should be made, for it belongs to the 
Crown. Look into the matter, ascertain what remains, and 
speak to the sub-prefect about it."^ If the grain had ac- 
tually been the private property of the Grand Duchess, his 
sister Elise, in whose domains Elba had been included, he 
was robbing her, but, as he remarked when he took the 
furniture out of her Piombino palace, and the other furniture 
belonging to his brolher-in-law. Prince Borghese, " it does 
not go out of the family." 

" It will probably be necessary to take the storehouse of 
M. Senno. The Commune must make an agreement with 
him and give him some property in exchange."^ Senno was 
farmer of the revenue from salt and fishery, and a man of 
substance, who according to Pons " had resources to re- 
place what was taken from him." The store in question was 
at first intended by Napoleon for his lazaretto, and might 
thus be regarded as a building dedicated for the public 
service, which the Commune should pay for by giving the 
owner something in exchange. Napoleon's principle was that 
all public buildings such as barracks, chapels, town halls, 
were his own personal property, to be sold or otherwise 
disposed of as he might think fit, but that a building seized 
by him, if intended for a public purpose, should be paid for 
by the public ; then it also became his private property, and 
therefore saleable by him. 

The salt and fishery stores belonging to Senno were con- 
verted into stables for the Emperor's horses and carriages. 
Colonel Vincent says that Napoleon took these buildings 
without paying for them. Pons attempts to dispute this, 
but is not convincing. He says that " for his horses the 
Emperor took by assault the vast stores for fishery and salt," 
but that after an interview between Napoleon and Senno 
" the cession took place by common accord." Napoleon in 
fact threatened to deprive Senno of his monopoly, and the 

* Correspoiidauce, No. 21666. 
^ CorrespcMidauce, No. 21582. 


contractor, having " resources to replace what was taken," 
submitted to the seizure of his propert5^ 

Soon after his arrival. Napoleon sent the tax-gatherer to 
collect the contributions which were in arrear from 1st 
September, 1813, to 1st May, 1814, the eight months which 
preceded his possession of the island. He had no right to the 
money, and the Elbans refused to pay. Campbell says : 
" In riding lately near a village I saw a collection of the 
inhabitants insulting the tax-gatherer, with shouting and 
the sound of horns. He has been informed that he will be 
again sent back very soon to levy the contributions, and 
that a hundred of the Guards are to accompany him, to live 
upon the inhabitants at free quarters until the required sum 
is paid."^ 

It was at Capoliveri that the greatest resistance was 
offered. The tax-gatherer was assaulted and driven off. 
Napoleon sent a dozen gendarmes and ten mounted police 
under Paoli, with instructions to lodge in the houses of the 
leaders of the revolt until the money was paid ; but the people 
of Capoliveri, headed by their priest, drove out the police. 
The Emperor was indignant ; he reproached the police 
for their failure, saying that he had imagined that they were 
courageous Corsicans, but found they were cowards. He sent 
Major Colombani with two hundred men to escort the police 
back to the rebellious village. In his order to Drouot he 
wrote :^ "Each man will have three packets of cartridges. 
Major Colombani will arrest the priest who has been the 
leader of the riot, and two others. He will remain with his 
column at Capoliveri until the contributions are paid. He 
will find lodgings with the fifty inhabitants who are most 
in arrears. The sieur Bigischi, secretary-general of the 
Intendant, will go there with a letter from the Intendant 
to establish the fact of the bad behaviour, arrest three chiefs 
of the revolt, and compel immediate payment of the con- 

1 Campbell, p. 248. 

'^ 16tL November, 1814 ; Registre, No. 129. 


tributions ; otherwise it may be the worse for CapoHveri. 
He must make the town understand that. He must manage 
so as to arrive only an hour before the troops, and if the local 
notabilities are able to induce the inhabitants to be reason- 
able the police alone will enter the town." 

On the arrival of the Emperor's commissioner, the mayor 
was able to preside over a meeting of the Municipal Council, 
but these notables declined to assist in any way, declaring 
that they could not compel any payments nor give the names 
of the delinquents. Then the soldiers presented their im- 
posing force, and the money was immediately forthcoming. 

Rio Montague also declined to pay, but Napoleon shrank 
from the publicity which w^ould attach to any violent mea- 
sures against so important a community, with its cosmo- 
politan connections. He ordered that the arrears should be 
carried as a debt against the pay of each Avorkman, and should 
so be gradually paid off. 

The total of the arrears collected with so much trouble 
and without any right, was only 2282 francs, or about £90 ; 
and the whole of the proceeds of the tax, including these 
arrears, obtained by Napoleon during his sojourn at Elba, 
w^as only 21,666 francs or about £850. 

So unpopular was the tax that a priest was sent by the 
inhabitants to enquire of Campbell whether he would take 
charge of a petition to the British Government, asking for 
protection against the exactions of their Sovereign. Napoleon's 
efforts to obtain labour without pay, or at reduced rates, 
and his relentless exaction of taxes for periods preceding his 
legal right, turned his subjects from their rapturous welcome 
to feelings of bitter hatred. 

Napoleon demanded from Pons a sum of 50,000 francs 
which was in his possession on account of the working of 
the mine previous to the 11th April, 1814, the date of the 
Treaty of Fontainebleau. The produce of the Rio mines 
had been, by Imperial Decree of the 23rd March, 1809, 
allocated to the Legion of Honour ; to that organisation, 


therefore, this money belonged. Napoleon, however, had no 
hesitation about depriving his valiant soldiers of what 
belonged to them. He sent Drouot with orders to get the 
money from Pons and the Legion of Honour. Pons said : 
" I shall act according to my conscience," a remark which 
Drouot could but applaud ; he comforted Pons by observ- 
ing that "the conscience is the best of all guides."^ Ber- 
trand, on the other hand, had little understanding of such 
scruples and supported the rapacity of Napoleon. Pons 
was taken by Bertrand before the Emperor, who said in a 
severe tone : " Why do you not hand over to me this money ? " 
Pons remarks in his account of the scene : " The nature of 
my character makes me well fitted to cope with such a 
situation. I replied that the money belonged to the French 
Government whatever might be that Government." Napoleon 
looked fixedly at him, shrugged his shoulders, and turned his 
back. He was dismissed, and Bertrand said to him : " You 
have wounded the feelings of His Majesty." 

From that time Pons declares that he was treated by 
Napoleon to every kind of annoyance and humiliation. 
Napoleon often remarked that the Grand Marshal of the 
Palace, Duroc, never said no to him. As Pons observes, 
Duroc's method was to say : " Yes, sire ! " and go away ; 
then later he would explain, if called upon (which was not 
always the case), why he had not done Avhat had been 
ordered, and Napoleon would make no complaint, though 
with anybody but Duroc he might have been enraged at 
finding he had not been instantly obeyed. 

It was now known throughout the island that an official 
in Napoleon's employ had refused to deliver up money which 
had been demanded, and there were not wanting courtiers 
to insinuate that Pons would not have dared to act with 
such independence towards the Emperor of the French. 
Pons observes : " The Emperor was tortured with the idea 

1 Pons^ p. 85 et seq. ; Pelissier, RegistrCj pp. 92, 96 ; Campbell, p. 250; 
Peyrusse, p. 241. 


From a contempoi.iry engraving 


that he was being beUttled. He leaned even more upon his 
imperial grandeur than upon his military glory. Perhaps he 
was right. His military glory was an immortal and accom- 
plished fact which nothing could destroy nor diminish, which 
would be celebrated, independent of human vicissitudes, as 
the apanage of future centuries. It was not the same with 
his imperial grandeur. However immense that may have 
been, fate had broken it, and he alone, the man, the great 
man, remained superior to events. It was above all the man 
whom one respected in the Emperor." This shrewd analysis 
of the psychology of the great soldier, who was incidentally 
a fallen Emperor, is a helpful explanation of the sensitive 
tenacity he exhibited in insisting upon the retention, to the 
utmost possible extent, of the forms and ceremonies, the 
adulations and genuflexions of the Imperial Court. 

His military fame was immortal, and could be left to itself, 
but what was escaping was the divinity of an anointed King. 
He would never let that go so long as he had life in him. 
The refusal of Pons to do as he was told was an affront to 
His Majesty. Moreover, defiant disobedience to his orders 
was a novelty to Napoleon ever since the day when, aged 
twenty-six, he had taken command of the Army of Italy. 
Already at that age he was by temperament a dominator, 
and his subsequent experience of eighteen years of un- 
questioned submission to his behests, had fixed in hard 
cement his natural expectation that his orders would always 
be instantly obeyed. To be defied now that he was a fallen 
man was a blow to his self-esteem, and in these circumstances 
the fact, obvious to all, that he was in the wrong, became of 
some significance. 

When men came forward with offers to undertake the 
post of Administrator at a reduced salary, and even when 
Napoleon's mother asked him to give the appointment to a 
Corsican friend, he declined to remove Pons, nor would he 
accept the resignation of the post which Pons more than 
once tendered. He thought his dignity would be best served 


by assuming an exalted superiority, based on the certainty 
that no man would or could continue to disobey his express 

Napoleon now sent his treasurer Peyrusse to try to con- 
vince Pons that the point in dispute was a technicality, a 
mere matter of accounts, but Pons was not to be moved from 
his opinion that it was a question of common honesty. 

Napoleon then summoned Pons to a private audience and 
tried to browbeat him. " The Emperor," says Pons, " would 
not discuss, he would only command. He had the right to 
interrupt, but he would not suffer himself to be interrupted, 
so that it was not possible to oppose reasons against his 
reasons ; consequently he was always in the right. But 
this was not his usual way. In general he would discuss and 
take pleasure in hearing others discuss, assuming no pre- 
dominance, and w^hen his opinion was shown not to be the 
best, he would admit his defeat. But here no discussion was 
possible. The positions were cut out : on one side right, on 
the other might. The Emperor was disinclined to use his 
might : he could not invoke his right. Hence his perplexity. 
He wanted the money. All that he said and did might 
be expressed in the word ' Give ' ; all I replied in the 
words ' I will not give.' So we could not come to an 

There were frequent causes of disagreement now between 
Pons and the Emperor. Two coastguard boats were employed 
at Rio Marina to prevent smuggling of the ore. Napoleon 
dismissed the men and when Pons begged on their behalf 
that they should be accorded some other engagement, being 
now without employment of any kind, Napoleon paid no 
heed. When Pons had to report that the smuggling had 
recommenced. Napoleon exhibited his annoyance, but did 
not reinstate the guards. 

Then he sent to the mines flour which had gone bad and 
had been refused by the soldiers. Having used it and found 
that the bread was bad, and that some of the miners had been 


made ill, Pons protested, in a letter to the Emperor which 
he composed with the assistance of his friend Drouot. 
Napoleon's reply was to order Pons to mix good flour with 
bad flour. Pons did so, and the bread was still so bad that 
a hundred miners became unwell. On his reporting this to 
Napoleon and positively declining to distribute the bad 
bread, the Emperor had to acquiesce, but not before the 
affair had made him very unpopular with the miners. 

Napoleon next gave orders that the number of workmen 
in the mines should be reduced. Pons declared that the 
miners by this time were in a state of exasperation, and that 
he had not the power to carry out the order without using 
violence ; and he added that if the workers were reduced 
the quantity of work done, and of ore obtained, would be 
reduced also. Napoleon appeared to be convinced, but soon 
afterwards he told Pons to send him miners to do other work 
in various parts of the island. Pons had to submit, but he 
remarks that the result was that less ore was obtained from 
the mines, and that the miners were of little use elsewhere. 
" The work of the mines lost ; the other works did not 

To bend Pons to his will Napoleon paid a second visit to 
the mine. Pons describes at considerable length the public 
quarrel which took place. " The Emperor arrived. He 
scarcely responded to my respectful salutation. He placed 
himself at the end of a long table, and made me sit at the 
opposite end. General Bertrand was on his right, the 
treasurer Peyrusse was on his left." Napoleon began by 
demanding why Pons did not pay the money, and a dis- 
cussion or altercation ensued which ended by his saying : 
" You will do what I tell you to do. . . ." "I will not do 
it. . . ." " Sir, I am always the Emperor. ..." " And I, 
Sire, am always a Frenchman." By this time the voices of 
both men had been raised, on the one side to a tone of 
strident threat, on the other to vehement defiance. Napoleon 
was the first to recover his composure, and before long was 


doing his best to soothe the excessive agitation of the 
administrator. Drouot said to Pons : " The Emperor is 
always free from rancour. His anger does not go beyond 
the skin. He is not hke you, moved to the vitals." After 
breakfast Napoleon, being served with coffee, handed the 
cup to Pons. " Take it, calm yourself, there is no cause for 
you to torment yourself beyond measure in this way." Then 
turning to Drouot he said, with a smile : " If he knew of our 
great quarrels, or rather my quarrels, he would not be so 
overcome as he is." Finally, when he left he gave Pons the 
exceptional honour of a handshake. 

The readiness, even anxious desire, to make friends, after 
a disagreement, was characteristic of Napoleon. " We have 
been like lovers," he would say ; "we have quarrelled. But 
lovers make it up, and then love each other more than ever. 
Good night, sleep well, no offence meant." 

In the end Pons wrote to Scitivaux, the receiver for the 
mines, asking his opinion, and the reply was that it might be 
assumed that the French Government would deduct from 
the subsidy payable to Napoleon, any money which he might 
have abstracted from the Legion of Honour. 

Pons thereupon announced to Napoleon that he would 
pay the money. He was still of opinion that it belonged by 
right to the Legion of Honour, but he was convinced that 
the Emperor would not allow him to suffer for having given 
in to his importunity. Napoleon sent for him and behaved 
to him with marked coldness. He began by saying that he 
was not going to occupy himself with bickerings {tracasseries), 
and finally treated him to his most crushing Imperial manner, 
dismissing him with the remark, as he went out of the room : 
" You were at the siege of Toulon, were you not ? " and not 
waiting for an answer. 

Pons was much offended, complained to Drouot of the 
Imperial hauteur and especially of the use of the word 
tracasserie, and kept himself away. Napoleon sent to enquire 

he was ill, and Pons was induced to present himself once 


more. Napoleon then, with a smile, said there would be no 
further reference to tracasseries ; but he told Pons plainly 
that he had throughout been in the wrong. " Your duty 
was subordinate to my right. It was for me to judge what 
you should do. I think you have allowed yourself to be 
seduced by ideas of republican integrity," referring to the 
revolutionary opinions of the administrator. When Pons 
wished to explain Napoleon stopped him : " We will not 
argue. It would be useless. I wished you to have my 
opinion and I leave you free of yours." So ended the affair. 
After the second restoration Pons was officially absolved 
of all blame. 

Pons was not accustomed to be told that he was incapable 
of judging between right and wrong, and had not been 
broken into the tone of abject submission which Napoleon 
still demanded. He never forgave the word tracasserie. 
When Napoleon wanted him to take over the superintendence 
of the salt works Pons declined, remarking that if he were 
to investigate the management of those undertakings, it 
was quite possible he might become tracassier. 

Napoleon's parsimony was as bad as his rapacity. He 
examined every item in the accounts that were presented 
to him, and made it almost a rule to deduct something from 
every bill. When it was proposed to prepare rooms for some 
of his officers in the barrack of St. Francis for 2500 francs, 
he would sanction only 2400, thus saving £4.^ Examples 
of that spirit are numerous in his correspondence. 

His orders to Bertrand, Drouot, and Peyrusse are full of 
instructions as to the collection of revenues, and the reduc- 
tion of expenses by small economies here and there. He 
seemed to cut down bills in trifling degree for the mere 
pleasure of doing it. Large savings were not made in this 
manner, but he had learned parsimony in the school of 
penury and had never forgotten the lesson, even when 
seated upon the throne of France. 

' Letter to Drouot, IGth November, 1814. Lord Crawford's collection. 



There was no need for this congenial exercise of the cheese- 
paring habits of his youth. The accounts of his treasurer 
Peyrusse give the following figures^ : — 

Civil Administration 
From May, 1814, to Srd June, 1815 


Intendance 7,898 



Office of Imperial Receiver 


Post Office . 






Roads ..... 




Administration of the Mines 


Tax Collection 



Military Administration 

From 1st May, 1814, to Srd J 

line, 1815 




Battalion of Chasseurs . 

. 117,075 

Free Battalion 


Gendarmes .... 


Infantry of the Guard . 

. 291,717 

Cavalry of the Guard 


Artillery .... 


Marine .... 


Hospitals .... 


Expenses of Administration . 


Officers of the suite 


Barracks .... 


^ Peyrusse, Appendix, pp. 146, 147, 148, 150, 










From 11th April, 1814, to 31st May, 1814 264,053 
From 1st Jmie, 1814, to 3rd June, 1815 . 750,628 
Voyage from Portoferraio to Paris . . 245,593 

Payments to the Guard before the 31st 

May, 1814 
National Guard 
Coastguard . 
Provisions . 
Payments to the payer De Joly, sent to 

Elba on the 1st June, 1815 

Household of the Emperor 

Total for the household 1,260,274 

Civil Administration 
Military Administration 

. 145,741 

. 1,446,309 

Grand total of actual expenditure 2,852,324 


From the \st May, 1814, to the 3rd June, 1815, zvhen the duty 
was relegated to the new Receiver 

Cash in hand 

V^CI..')1J 111 llctllU . . 

Contribution financiere . 


Stamps and Registration 






Sale of stores 


Shipping dues 


Mines .... 


Postal receipts 



Ten per cent upon octroi revenue . 
Five per cent upon communal revenue 
Received for foundlings 
Sale of houses .... 
Miscellaneous .... 


As the actual payments were 2,852,315 francs there 
was thus an actual deficit of 2,246,006 francs. 

To meet that sum Napoleon had to draw upon the money 
he brought with him from France. 

On the 10th April, 1814, Peyrusse, the treasurer in attend- 
ance at Fontainebleau, had in his charge 488,913 francs.^ 
On learning that the Emperor had abdicated he went to Ber- 
trand and told him he wished to continue his service. The 
Grand Marshal took Peyrusse to Napoleon, who received him 
alone. Peyrusse explained that he desired to place his 
services at His Majesty's disposal, and to follow him into 
exile, an offer which was graciously accepted. He exposed 
the condition of his cash-box, with barely £20,000 remaining ; 
he observed that the Treasurer-General, Baron de la 
Bouillerie, had taken to Orleans, in the company of the 
Empress Marie Louise, the general treasiu'c of the Crown ; 
and he suggested that he should be sent to Orleans to bring it 
away. " Bah ! " said Napoleon, " when one loses the Empire 
one may as well lose everything," and with these words he 
left the room, to conceal his emotion. When Peyrusse told 
Bert rand what had passed, the Grand Marshal observed 
that he also was much embarrassed to know how he could 
venture to bring the financial situation before Napoleon. 
Early the next day Peyrusse was summoned by Napoleon, 
whom he found looking upset and pale. The Emperor gave 
him a letter to deliver to Marie Louise, and ordered him to 
start at once, and, in any event, not to allow the letter to 

1 PejTusse, p. 217. 


From a picture aken during his residence in Elba, which in 1850 was in the possession 
of Signor Foresi, of Portofeiraio 


fall into the hands of the enemy who were already to be found 
between Fontainebleau and Orleans, placed there expressly 
in order to prevent communication between the two places. 

Peyrusse hid the letter inside the lining of his waistcoat 
and, guided by a groom, arrived at Orleans early on the 
12th April. Marie Louise, on reading the letter, told him 
that in it Napoleon asked her to send the treasure brought 
from Paris, but that it was too late, that on the 10th April, 
two days before, orders had been received from the Pro- 
visional Government to give up all the treasure brought to 
Orleans. This accordingly had been done, with the excep- 
tion of a sum of 6,000,000 francs (£240,000) which had been 
left for the Empress herself and her household. Of this she 
required 500,000 francs (£20,000) to give as a present to the 
Guards who had acted as her escort. The remaining 5,500,000 
francs she would give to Napoleon. Peyrusse should speak 
to Meneval about it. Later on the same day Marie Louise 
sent again for Peyrusse and told him that she was taking 
with her, at once, to Rambouillet, boxes containing 2,933,600 
francs, for their greater security. Meneval gave Peyrusse a 
formal receipt for this sum, and Marie Louise assured him it 
would be forwarded to Napoleon from Rambouillet. Mene- 
val also retained 50,000 francs for the Empress and 436,398 
for the Guard. Peyrusse was left at Orleans with thirty 
cases containing 2,580,000 francs, protected only by the 
National Guards. He w^as in great anxiety, for foreign 
troops, and especially the much-dreaded Cossacks, had been 
seen in the neighbourhood. He sent off the groom to Fon- 
tainebleau with a letter to Bertrand informing him of his 
plight, and demanding an escort of troops. 

At 6 p.m. on the following day, 13th April, Deschamps 
arrived in a post vehicle to inform Peyrusse that the Napoleon 
battalion of the Guard was on the way under Cambronne, 
and was making forced marches. At midnight the Guard 
arrived and the boxes were placed on the wagon they had 
brought, and were then escorted safely to Napoleon. 


Marie Louise did not forward the money from Rambouillet, 
as she had promised to do. Peyrusse sent special agents 
several times to demand it, but all they succeeded in obtain- 
ing was 911,000 francs. For the remainder, over 2,000,000 
francs, Peyrusse went himself, on the 18th April, Napoleon's 
departure from Fontainebleau being postponed until his 
return. But Marie Louise now said that she would return 
the money from Vienna. She never fulfilled the promise. 

The funds upon which Napoleon could draw consisted 

therefore of the following sums : — 

Cash remaining at Fontainebleau . . 488,913 

Brought by Peyrusse from Orleans . . 2,580,002 

Brought by his agents from Rambouillet . 911,000 


Deducting the deficit of 2,246,000 francs leaves 1,733,909 
as the sum in hand on the 3rd June, 1815. 

To ascertain Napoleon's resources when he left Elba on 
the 26th February, we must add what was spent on the 
journey to Paris, 245,593 francs, which would give him on 
that date 1,979,502 francs. The other items of expenses 
and receipts after he had left the island are not im- 
portant. From this account it would seem then that when 
Napoleon left he had spent just half his capital, and that he 
had only enough to last him till the end of the year 1815. 
In reality, as we shall see, he could have held out for several 

The budget fixed upon by Napoleon with Peyrusse for 
the civil administration for the year 1815 was 114,530 
francs.^ Of this no less than 40,000 francs was for roads 
and bridges, on which we may assume that some economy 
would in fact have been made. The figure for the previous 
year's administration was 102,634 francs. In round numbers 
we may put the civil account at 100,000 francs. 

^ Peyrusse, p. 267.^ 


The budget for war was fixed at 1,015,000^ for 1815. 

The outlay from 1st May, 1814, to 3rd June, 1815, nomin- 
ally for thirteen months, was 1,446,309 ; but from this 
should be deducted : — 

Latrines, cisterns, works at Pianosa 
Purchase of I'fitoile 
Barracks, furniture and effects 
Payment to Guard before May, 1814 
Payments to De Joly 



Deducting this from 1,446,309 leaves 988,301, which is 
fairly in accord with Napoleon's estimate. The military 
expenses may be put at 1,000,000 francs. 

The budget for the household was fixed, first at 350,000 
francs, 2 later at 380,000 francs. ^ The previous expenditure 
from 11th April, 1814, to 3rd June, 1815, nearly fourteen 
months, was 1,200,274 francs, but that included the heavy 
expenses from Fontainebleau and the return to Paris in 1815. 
For a year, from 1st June, 1814, to 3rd June, 1815, the 
household cost was 750,628 francs. The accounts of Peyrusse 
show, when analysed, that this included 60,000 francs which 
were stolen, 136,000 for purchase of estates, 61,000 for 
furniture, and 188,000 for work on the various houses. 
This amounts altogether to 385,000 francs for presumably 
non-recurring expenditure, which would leave 365,000 for 
the total for the household. But after the budget had been 
settled, in January, 1815, the salaries of the staff were cut 
down by one-half, and the indemnity hitherto paid on account 
of lodging was suppressed, the officials being quartered in 
the barracks ; and a number of other economies were effected. 
Napoleon's first estimate of 350,000 was, after these reduc- 

' Peyrusse, p. 265. 2 Peynisse, p. 245. 

* Letter to Bertrand, 26tli October, llegistre. No. 111. Correspondance, 
No. 216G2. ' 6 ^ y , 



tions, considered by Peyrusse to be more than would be 
required. We may therefore accept it as a Hberal provision. 

The expenditure would thus be : — 


. 100,000 
. 1,000,000 

Civil Administration 


. 350,000 
Total 1,450,000 

The receipts had been 606,309 francs, from 1st May, 1814, 

to 3rd June, 1815, a period of thirteen months, but of this 

sum no less than 185,386 francs was for receipts anterior to 

the 11th April, 1814^ (to which Napoleon had no right), 

40,117 was from sale of stores, and 20,000 from sale of 

houses. Deducting these items, 245,503, we have receipts 

of 360,806 francs for a period nominally of thirteen months, 

but in reality of little more than ten, for the revenue was not 

collected with diligence after the departure of Napoleon. 

The budget for receipts expected in 1815 was drawn up by 

Napoleon and his treasurer as follows : — 


Various taxes 

. 87,000 

Mines .... 

. 300,000 

Salt .... 

. 22,000 


. 28,000 


. 10,000 


This would appear to have been over-sanguine. Taking a 
moderate estimate of 400,000 francs, and deducting that 
from the estimated expenditure of 1,450,000, we get an 
annual deficit of 1,050,000 francs (£42,000). Napoleon's 
capital remaining on 26th February, 1815, 1,979,502 francs, 
would thus have lasted him till the end of 1816. 

' Peyrusse, p. 241. 

2 Peyrusse, pp. 267, 268. 

Appendix, No. 124. 



But he and Peyrusse expected that other considerable 
sums would be available. There was already due to the mine 
from various purchasers of ore no less a sum than 549,000 
francs, which Napoleon and Peyrusse put down as a receipt 
to be expected, in addition to the annual revenue of 300,000 
francs. There were credits with bankers at Genoa, Leghorn, 
and Rome, amounting to 254,000 francs, and cash at Porto- 
ferraio 15,000 francs, and it was expected that the sale of 
various properties would bring in 440,000 francs, as follows: — 

Sale of houses and lands 
„ „ bullets, iron, etc. 
„ „ powder 
„ „ provisions . 
„ ,, horses and carriages 


Due to mine 
Credits and cash 




Total 1,258,000 

Here was enough to defray the deficit for more than 
another year. 

But even that is not all. Napoleon had placed with 
Eugene, with Laffitte, and with Lavalette, sums amounting 
altogether to 1,600,000 francs, which was much more than 
sufficient to see him through a fourth year.^ 

Allowing for some exaggerations in his expectations, it 
remains that Napoleon could have kept up his imperial 
style, and his military strength, for another four years. It 
is not to be supposed that he would have found it necessary 
to continue prepared for attack, or that he would have been 
left entirely on his own resources, all that time. There was 

' Massou, " Napoleon a Saiut Heleue," p. 317. 


no necessity for anxiety in the matter of finance, and he 
knew it. He said so himself at St. Helena, when there was 
no longer any need for concealing the truth. ^ 

Under these circumstances it is amusing to observe how 
easily he deceived Campbell, and all the other spies of 
foreign Governments. Every report from Elba stated that 
Napoleon was in great distress for want of money. Soon 
after his arrival in Paris he had a statement to that effect 
inserted in the " Moniteur," on the 13th April, 1815, in order 
to expose the dishonesty of the Bourbons. The economies 
and reductions of salaries at Elba were accompanied by loud 
laments ; there was no attempt at concealment, no furtive 
shame, rather a prepared and elaborate display, that the 
world might not forget how he was being treated. It was 
policy, as much as natural aptitude, that made Napoleon 
cut down bills and reduce salaries. He wished it to be 
supposed that he was reduced to impotence by penury ; 
that he was a victim to the dishonesty of Louis XVIII. He 
behaved in the same way at St. Helena. 

' "L'ile d'Elbe et les Cent Jours^" Correspondaucej Vol. XXXI, p. 27. 



MARIE LOUISE, it will be remembered, on the 
12th April, ISl'l, left Orleans, whence she could 
have reached Napoleon at Fontainebleau in a 
few hours, for Rambouillet, nearer Paris. It 
is said that Napoleon sent his Guard to fetch her, and that 
she hurried away as soon as the news arrived that the Guard 
was coming ; but the story told by Peyrusse proves that it 
was for his treasure, not his wife, that Napoleon sent the 
Guard. The war was at an end, and she had a large escort 
of French cavalry at Orleans, and was not in need of the 
further protection of the Guard for a journey to Fontaine- 

At Rambouillet Marie Louise received a visit from her father, 
who went through the form of saying that she should join 
her husband later on, but insisted that, in the meantime, 
she should return to her native country. He wrote to 
Napoleon a hypocritical letter, in which he said that the 
health of his daughter had suffered so prodigiously that he 
had urged her to spend some months in the bosom of her 
family. " Restored to health," he added, " my daughter 
will go to take possession of her territory, which will naturally 
bring her near to the residence of Your Majesty." 

At Rambouillet the Empress also received visits from the 
Czar on the 19th April, and the King of Prussia on the 20th. 
Napoleon was right in objecting that these monarchs were 
acting in the worst of taste in thus presenting themselves 



as conquerors, which was excessively disagreeable for Marie 
Louise. The Czar wished to appear magnanimous and 
gallant, and the King of Prussia would not be ignored. 

When he found that he would not be allowed, as he had 
desired, to travel with his wife by way of Italy, Napoleon 
wrote to her on the 18th to follow the advice of Corvisart 
and take a course of the waters at Aix-en-Savoie. 

At Frejus, just before sailing, Napoleon wrote her a note 
to be sent on to the Emperor of Austria : — 

" According to Article 11 of the Treaty, what comes from 
the Civil List belongs to the Emperor. The Due de Cadore 
has the account of all that belongs to the Civil List and of 
the economies that have been made in fourteen years. 

" A treasure of ten to twelve millions has been unjustly 
taken at Orleans, and is now sequestered at Paris. It is 
evident that as the French Government is acting throughout 
in bad faith, against all justice, nothing is to be expected 
from that quarter of the two millions placed upon the great 
book and destined for the expenses of the island of Elba, 
unless a foreign intervention takes up the affair. 

" There were presents with portraits of the Emperor to the 
value of four or five hundred thousand francs which had 
been bought with the funds of the Civil List, and which were 
taken at Orleans, as well as all his crockery and silver. The 
Emperor has also been deprived of his library and of 
everything required for the daily use of the Emperor and 

Bertrand wrote on the same date to Meneval a letter 
inspired by Napoleon, and meant to be shown to Marie 
Louise, in which he said : " You will realise that we very 
much desire that the Empress should come and divide her 
time between Parma and the island of Elba ; we should be 
so happy to see her sometimes." 

These letters, written before Napoleon had sailed for Elba, 
show that he had already realised that the French Govern- 
























o >. 

S 6 


ment had no intention of paying him the money due by the 
Treaty of Fontainebleau. They also show that he did not 
expect Marie Louise to hve permanently with him at Elba ; 
at most she would visit him sometimes from Parma. 

Marie Louise left Rambouillet with her son on the 25th 
and arrived at the Castle of Schoenbrunn, near Vienna, 
on the 18th May. There she saw a good deal of her grand- 
mother, Caroline, sister of Marie Antoinette, and formerly 
Queen of the two Sicilies. In spite of the deadly injury 
Napoleon had done her the ex-Queen urged Marie Louise 
to join him, and when she excused herself by referring to 
the obstacles that were put in her way, Caroline replied that 
she should tie sheets to the window-sill of her room and escape 
at night in a disguise. " That is what I would do, for when one 
is married it is for life." Marie Louise was not made of such 
stuff, but Caroline succeeded in turning her thoughts to- 
wards Napoleon, and prevailed on her to wear a portrait 
of him. That was as far as the wife could go, and then only 
while in the presence of her grandmother. 

On the 29th June she escaped from that beneficent influ- 
ence, and went to Aix-en-Savoie, leaving her son with her 
relations. Corvisart had recommended the waters. Napoleon 
objected. He wrote on the 3rd July : " If the Empress 
has waited at Vienna for the answer to her letter, the Emperor 
desires that she should not go to Aix, and if she has already 
gone, that she should remain there only for one course of 
baths, and return as soon as possible to Tuscany, where there 
are waters which have the same qualities as those of Aix. 
They are nearer to us and Parma, and would allow of the 
Empress having her son with her. When M. Corvisart 
advised the waters of Aix, he did not know the waters of 
Tuscany, which have the same properties." 

This letter arrived too late, nor would it have had any 
effect, for when, at Aix, Marie Louise received it, she wrote 
to Meneval : " You know how I desire to do the wish of the 
Emperor, but in this case ought I to do so, if it does not 


agree with the intentions of my father ? " That was her 
answer to the energetic remonstrances of the ex-Queen of 

She arrived at Aix on July 17th. Outside the town she was 
met by General Count Neipperg, an officer and diplomatist of 
proved ability and distinguished manners. He wore a large 
piece of black silk over the upper part of his face, having 
lost one eye from a wound. Meneval says that his appearance 
gave Marie Louise a disagreeable impression which she did not 
dissimulate. Neipperg had a wife, whom he had married to 
make legitimate her children. 

The feminine point of view with regard to Neipperg has 
been thus expressed :^ " He had lost an eye in the war, 
and a scar that reached obliquely across his face was con- 
cealed by a black bandage, which gave his countenance a 
singular attraction, on account of the contrast between the 
refined, gentle features and this proof of bravery. He had 
eloped with a married woman, and by her he had a large 

Neipperg's instructions were that he was, " without arous- 
ing suspicion, to report what goes on. He must assist the 
Empress with his counsels and his presence, and if he cannot 
in any way prevent her from repairing to the island of Elba, 
at least he must accompany her." The Empress was on 
French soil, and surrounded by a French suite, Corvisart, 
Isabey, Talma, Bausset, Cussy, and the Duchesse de Monte- 
bello. It was General Neipperg's task to counteract all that 
influence. He succeeded in a degree and a manner that had 
not been anticipated, for he was soon a personal friend of 
the Empress, and shortly afterwards her lord and master. 

To suppose that he was chosen with the hope and expecta- 
tion that he would seduce her, is to give the Emperor Francis 
credit for a more remarkable intelligence than he possessed. 
The names of several persons of whom he knew little having 
been proposed, he referred the matter to Schwartzenberg, 
1 " Napoleon's Sou," by Clara Tschudi^ p. 113. 


who chose General Neipperg, whom he had ah'eady presented 
to Napoleon at the Tuileries four years before, and whose 
division happened at the time to be stationed on the Savoy 
frontier. That was how Neipperg came to be appointed. 

At this time it was the intention of Marie Louise to go to 
Parma as soon as her cure was finished. She was most 
anxious to find herself once more a reigning sovereign, 
with the dignity and comparative independence of that 

On the 9th August Bertrand wrote to Meneval : " The 
Emperor expects the Empress at the end of August, and 
desires that she should bring her son with her." Marie 
Louise had not received news of that letter when she wrote 
to Meneval, who was not in attendance at Aix, on the 15th 
August, the birthday of Napoleon and fete day of her son : 
" How can I be gay on the fifteenth, when I am obliged to 
pass that festival so solemn for me, far away from the two 
people who are most dear to me ? " She was not obliged. 
She could have gone to Napoleon even now if she had 
been determined to do so, as the instructions to Neipperg 

When women like Queen Caroline reminded her of her 
plain obligations, she tried to want to go to her husband, 
spoke as if she would certainly do so, betook herself to 
affectionate expressions, but the actual wish to go would not 
come. She had been brought up to consider two things only, 
the authority of her father and her own inclinations. 

She was to be disappointed in her hope of being able to 
go from Aix to take possession of the Parma territories, for 
the Congress of Vienna had not concluded its deliberations, 
and Bourbon claims were being put forward. On the 19th 
August she wrote accordingly to her father, that she had asked 
General Neipperg to accompany her on a journey to Switzer- 
land during September ; and that she would then, expecting 
the Congress to be over, return to Vienna, and arrive there 
early in October. 


The cure being finished, Marie Louise set out for Switzer- 
land with Madame de Brignole and General Neipperg as her 
principal attendants, of whom the former had never liked 
Napoleon and the latter had always hated him. At Berne 
they met Caroline, Princess of Wales. After a day of excur- 
sion together, Marie Louise and Caroline sang duets in the 
evening in the hotel, accompanied by Neipperg, who was 
an excellent musician. "La ci darem la mano " was not 
beyond their powers. 

On the 22nd September she wrote to her father : "I have 
received a letter from the Emperor which is quite insignificant; 
he speaks only of his health, and says absolutely nothing 
about his wish to have me go to the island of Elba." Making 
the most of the fact that Napoleon had written to her a 
letter in which he omitted to ask her to join him, his wife 
decided that she w^ould not go to Elba direct. From Parma 
she might, a reigning sovereign, pay Napoleon occasional 
visits. She had given up the effort to force herself to want to 
live with her husband, and felt much relieved at the termina- 
tion of the struggle, with the assumption of his indifference 
as the excuse. 

She was now finding pleasure in the society of another man. 
Neipperg's influence was already great. By the time the 
Swiss journey had been completed Marie Louise had turned 
altogether against Napoleon. She wrote to her father that 
she had within a week received two officers from Napoleon 
with letters in which he told her to start at once for Elba, 
where he awaited her with much impatience, and that she 
had replied verbally that she was going to Vienna, and could 
not make the journey without his (her father's) permission. 
" Be assured," she continued, " that I am now less than ever 
desirous of undertaking that voyage, and I give you my word 
of honour that I will never undertake it without first asking 
your permission." 

So Napoleon still wanted her. In spite of that patent fact 
she had made up her mind that she would give him up 


altogether. She would not go without her father's per- 
mission, and she knew she would never get that permission. 
This was the final decision. 

On the 4th October Marie Louise was back at Schoenbrunn, 
where she found her son in good health. From this time 
she remained under Austrian influence. She had already 
ceased to correspond with Napoleon, who was reduced to 
write, on the 10th October, a very supplicating letter to her 
uncle, the Grand Duke of Tuscany, as follows : — 

" My Brother and very dear Uncle, — Not having 
received news of my wife since the 10th August, nor of my 
son for six months, I am charging Chevalier Colonna with this 
letter. I beg Your Royal Highness to let me know whether 
you will allow me to address to you every week a letter for the 
Empress, and will send me in return news of her and the 
letters of the Comtesse de Montesquieu, my son's governess. 
I flatter myself that in spite of the events which have changed 
so many persons. Your Royal Highness preserves for me 
some friendship ; if you should be pleased to give me a formal 
assurance to that effect I should receive a sensible consolation .' ' 

This letter was not acknowledged by the Grand Duke, who 
sent it on to the Emperor Francis, who read it and then 
allowed Marie Louise to see it, with strict orders not to reply. 
Napoleon was obliged to desist from his efforts to communi- 
cate with her. He obtained news from time to time, through 
Bertrand, from Meneval. On the 1st January,1815, Marie Louise 
wrote to Napoleon for the first time since the 10th August, 
but only some formal lines, with the compliments of the 
season, and news of the health of his son. That was the last 
communication he ever received from his wife. 

Just at first, when she was ready to join Napoleon at 
Fontainebleau, his pride stood in the way, and to that extent 
the fault was his. But afterwards, when he called imploringly 
for her, she should have gone to him. There is ample 


feminine support for this opinion. We have already recorded 
the strong words of her grandmother. Queen CaroHne. Lady 
Burghersh was even more emphatic. She wrote : "I think 
she is a monster, for she pretended to love him, and he was 
always good to her. It is revolting in her to abandon him 
in misfortune, after having affected to adore him in pros- 
perity." There were near examples to show her the way. 
The Princess Augusta refused to abandon her husband, 
Eugene Beauharnais, stepson of Napoleon, in spite of the 
commands and threats of her father, the King of Bavaria. 
Caroline of WUrtemberg also resisted the pressure brought 
upon her to desert her husband, Jerome, Napoleon's 
brother. These women had been just as much " sacrificed " 
for the sake of their country as was the Austrian Grand 
Duchess. But Marie Louise, as she admitted one day to 
Napoleon, was a selfish woman. Only by compulsion could 
she be brought to do anything she did not like. If at first 
one must have some sympathy for her — ^and also for the other 
Iphigenias — that feeling, in her case, has to give way to 

The conduct of the Emperor Francis was also contemptible. 
He was ashamed of having been compelled to give his daugh- 
ter to a parvenu, and was anxious to put an end to the 
connection as soon as possible, in order to wipe out the 
memory of the transaction. Pride of blood was the source 
both of the father's command and the daughter's ready 
obedience. They had accepted the connection with Napoleon 
when he was great and powerful, and repudiated it when he 
had fallen. They had the pride of birth, but not of honour. 

The unfortunate offspring of the marriage could not be 
ignored or sent into exile, but as he grew up he found that he 
was in the way, that nobody wanted him, not even his 
mother. The character of Marie Louise is painfully exposed 
by the indifference she showed to her son's welfare. There 
were, of course, demonstrations of affection from time to 
time, but the unhappy lad could not fail to perceive that his 


presence reminded his mother disagreeably of her conduct 
to Napoleon. 

The Comtesse de Montesquieu wrote to her husband : 
" If he had a mother I would put him into her hands, and I 
should be blameless. But he has nothing like a mother 1 
This person is more indifferent to her child's lot than the 
most careless of the strangers who wait upon him." A hundred 
years later Clara Tschudi writes : " She had no shadow of 
excuse for leaving him, or for renouncing his rights ; nor for 
submitting to his being brought up by strangers, and losing 
both health and spirits, mainly for want of love, at the Court 
of Austria. And least of all can we forgive and forget that 
she arrived so late at his death-bed, and then merely after 
being urged by strangers to go to him. As a mother she 
deserves the crushing judgment that contemporary and later 
days have passed on her." 

Josephine, as the poor Due de Reichstadt admitted to his 
friend de Prokesch Oken, would not have deserted her 
husband and neglected her son. She would have seen more 
of her son, from whom Marie Louise was content to be separ- 
ated unnecessarily for long periods. She would not have 
let him die of neglect and despair. This mother, after some 
foolish tears about his grave, in her heart of hearts was glad 
that her son was no longer alive to torment her conscience. 

If Marie Louise had joined her husband at Elba ; if she had 
even kept her son alive ; the course of world events would 
have been very different. She had it in her power to change 
the whole face of European history in the nineteenth century. 



WHEN he first arrived at Elba Napoleon's physical 
energy was very trying to those who had to 
accompany him. Campbell, after mentioning 
his " restless perseverance " and " pleasure in 
perpetual movement," adds : " I do not think it possible 
for him to sit down to study, on any pursuits of retirement, 
as proclaimed by him to be his intention, so long as his state 
of health permits corporeal exercise. After being yesterday 
on foot in the heat of the sun from 5 a.m. to 3 p.m., visiting 
the frigates and transports, and even going down the hold 
among the horses, he rode on horseback for three hours, as 
he told me afterwards, 'pcur se defatiguer.'" That was an 
exceptional day, owing to the arrival of the Guard, but 
throughout the early part of his sojourn at Elba he was in 
such " perpetual movement " as to suggest a condition of 
excitement and hysterical restlessness. Pons says that 
sometimes he became much exhausted. One day " the 
Emperor was visibly fatigued. It was a day of very obvious 
distress. We begged him to go in ; he replied : ' One should 
never recoil at the first difficulty.' "^ To drown thought, to 
produce a physical exhaustion which might assist sleep, and 
also to satisfy his boyish curiosity. Napoleon careered over 
the island in every direction until, as he observed, he " knew 
it by heart." 

One of his expeditions was to the romantically situated 

1 Campbell, p. 243 ; PonSj p. 125. 


chapel of Monte Serrato. He went on horseback with 
Bertrand and Pons as companions, followed by the retinue 
of attendants. 

The chapel and hermitage of Monte Serrato stand on a 
small eminence in a valley, on a mass of debris thrown up 
in the centre of a crater. The hermits, following each other 
for centuries, have succeeded in surrounding their dwelling 
with cultivated land, carrying grass, vines, fruit, and vege- 
tables. Cork trees, figs, aloes, and chestnuts grow in pro- 
fusion. In front of the hermitage was a spacious terrace 
surrounded and covered by a wooden trellis, or pergola, 
made of the stems of aloes, over which vines had been 
trained, forming a pleasant outdoor shelter and place for 
dining during the hot weather. 

On Sunday a priest came to say Mass in the chapel. The 
resident hermit told Napoleon that formerly the sailors had 
entertained a great belief in the power of the Madonna of 
Monte Serrato, but that they had lost their confidence, and 
at that time were ordering very few Masses. " That wiDL 
continue," said he, " until the Virgin performs a good 

The valley was singularly smiling and peaceful on a fine 
day. Napoleon, with his taste for tragedy, remarked that 
in a storm it would be dark and awful, with the thunder 
reverberating from side to side. The hermit told him that 
thunderbolts fell often, but they had never touched the 
hermitage, whereupon Napoleon said that it was protected 
by having high sharp-pointed hills around. The hermit 
objected that it was better for people to believe in the pro- 
tection of the Virgin, to which Napoleon replied that he 
would not prevent them from doing so, but he added that 
their religion had in it so much truth that it did not requiie 
to be supported by assertions which were not really true. 

" By a happy precaution," says the ingenuous Pons, " the 
Emperor had brought a collation ; we devoured it, we all 
had good appetites. The Emperor was very pleased to see 


us eat ' like conscripts who have just finished a good piece 
of work.' That was one of his expressions which denoted 
satisfaction. The Emperor was as gay as the rest of us ; 
such moments were indeed moments of happiness. But 
there was a time of profound silence. The Emperor was 
sleeping, for a quarter of an hour, in his chair." ^ 

The Monte Serrato picnic was the last of the ener- 
getic expeditions. On 20th September Campbell writes : 
" Napoleon has four places of residence in different parts 
of the island, and the improvements and changes of these 
form his sole occupation. But as they lose their interest to 
his unsettled mind, and the novelty wears off, he occasionally 
falls into a state of inactivity never known before, and has 
of late retired to his bedroom for repose during several hours 
of the day. If he takes exercise it is in a carriage, and not on 
horseback as before. His health, however, is excellent and 
his spirits not at all depressed." Evidence to the same effect 
was furnished to Angles in Paris by a groom who had been 
in the imperial stable at Portoferraio. He said that 
Napoleon was well but had grown very fat, and had given 
up horseback exercise, going out only on foot or in his 
carriage. Later Campbell again writes : " Napoleon never 
takes exercise, excepting in a carriage drawn by four horses, 
and accompanied by Generals Bertrand and Drouot, who 
sit uncovered, whatever may be the state of the weather, 
while passing through the town and fortifications."* 

Vincent wrote of Napoleon : " He is always wanting trees 
and nothing seems to please him more than the view of an 
oak. I doubt, however, whether he would not have the trees 
which are around cut down if he saw them often and for 
long. He wants incessant change."* This desire for novelty 
is visible throughout Napoleon's career. He blamed himself 
at St. Helena, that he could not wait to finish with Spain 

1 Pons, p. 267. 

2 Firmiu-Didot, " Royaute ou Empire," p. 7-4. Campbell, pp. 305, 354. 

3 "Memoires de Tours/' Vol. Ill, p. 204. 


before beginning with Russia. He could not resist the new 
adventure. The writings of his youth show the same tendency. 
He took notes of the books he was reading, works on history, 
or science, or philosophy, but he never went on to the end 
of a book. He always threw it down before he had finished 
it. When, as at Elba, and subsequently at St. Helena, 
there was nothing new to be done or seen, he spent much of 
his time lying on his bed, in sulky indolence, turning over 
the leaves of one book after another, or working out calcula- 
tions for improvements which he had no intention of in- 
augurating. He made no preparation for writing that 
history of his achievements which he had spoken of when 
leaving Fontainebleau. He did not regard his public life as 
at an end ; the time for biography had not arrived. He 
still hoped that something would happen to change his 
fortune, but in the meantime, while waiting for events, he 
was putting on fat both physically and mentally. His portli- 
ness was developing into corpulence, and though he was 
often animated and gay there were periods when he would 
be pensive and silent for days on end.^ 

Napoleon was an intermittent sleeper. He retired early 
and would be awake often before three ; he would then rise 
and go into his library, and sometimes, would obtain more 
sleep, after an interval. If he did not wake till after four 
he would have a strong cup of coffee, and regard the day as 
having commenced. In the summer he often drove to San 
Martino at five in the morning, and returned to Portoferraio 
for breakfast at ten. In the afternoon, at five or six, he might 
go for another drive, or stroll about in the small garden of 
the Mulini Palace. His habits were irregular and his atten- 
dants had to be prepared for a summons at any hour of the 
day or night. 

It was difficult to pass the time, and his followers felt the 
monotony as much as Napoleon himself. Even Drouot 
found that his loyalty to the Emperor was subjected to an 

' Firmin-Didot, '' Royaute ou Empire/' p. 137. 


overpowering trial. He asked to be allowed to resign his 
post and return to France ; but the request was rejected. 
It was terrible for Napoleon to find that the whole of his 
suite, from the highest to the lowest, wished to be in a 
jDosition to leave him. The Guards were grumbling at the 
dullness of their lives, petitioning to be allowed to visit their 
relations in France (with the design of remaining there 
permanently), or taking their own leave and deserting. 
This discontent of the Guard, and the publicity they gave 
to it, was most galling to Napoleon. It touched his pride 
to feel that even his old soldiers wanted to leave him, and 
that all the world knew it. He learned of their saying to 
each other that the island was " a good refuge for a fox." 
He went amongst them, spending hours at a time in their 
quarters, tasting their food, enquiring about complaints, 
entering into easy and familiar talk, calling them openly his 
grumblers. " Well, grumbler," he said one day to a ser- 
geant, " thou art bored ? " " No, sire, but I am not too 
much amused all the same." " Thou art wrong, things must 
be taken as they come," and putting a Napoleon in the 
man's hand he moved away humming the air to the words : 

^a ne durera pas toujours, 
^a ne durera pas toujours.^ 

To make up for the losses bj'' desertion, Napoleon sent out 
recruiting agents to Corsica and Italy. French and Austrian 
officials were employed to impede this traffic. Brulart, 
Governor of Corsica, threatened severe measures against 
any person attempting to draw Corsicans away, and the 
French frigates Melpornene and Fleur-de-Lys were sent to 
cruise off the coast, with special instructions to interfere 
with the communications between Elba and Corsica. 

In Tuscany some of Napoleon's agents were seized and 
imprisoned. Guasco, the commander of Napoleon's Corsican 
battalion, protested in a letter of the 19th July, 1814, 

1 Peyrusse, p. 264, gives no date, but says this was " in the later days." 


addressed to the Governor of Leghorn, against the detention 
of three officers of the Corsican battaUon. No satisfaction 
being received, Droaot, on the 13th August, himself wrote. 
He said that Napoleon did not desire to obtain Italians, 
that all his recruits were French or Corsicans or Poles, 
that consequently his agents had not offended against 
Italian laws ; if they had done wrong they should be sent to 
Portoferraio to be punished. These assurances were of no 
avail, but the Austrian police failed to stop the traffic, 
which was, after all, only on a small scale. Napoleon was 
entitled to raise as large an army as he could maintain. 
He was an independent Sovereign. No steps had been 
taken to cause the Elban flag to be respected, in spite of 
the explicit undertakings by all the Powers, France included, 
by the 5th Article of the Treaty of Fontainebleau. Yet this 
recruiting of a handful of men in Corsica or Italy was given 
as an excuse for the non-payment of the pension. 

After the arrival of Pauline on the 30th October, 1814, 
efforts were made to enliven the dullness of the Elban 
existence. Balls and banquets and theatricals helped to 
pass the time. At one of these balls the Emperor was seated 
on a sofa that had been made to look like a throne. All who 
passed in front were expected to bow. Pauline herself was 
punctilious in this matter, but she was outdone by the In- 
tendant's wife, who found occasion to pass and repass con- 
stantly before the Emperor, bowing low with great ceremony 
on each occasion, until at last he gave clear signs of annoy- 
ance. The society present laughed at the over-officious 
lady, whereupon Napoleon made a point of being excep- 
tionally affable to her. 

To provide amusement. Napoleon converted the church 
of the Carmelites into a theatre, much to the indignation 
of the clergy. 1 He declined to pay for the work. He gave 
the building, though it may be doubted whether it was 
legally his to give, and he issued his commands. The money 
' Diary of bautoui, 2ud August, 1814. 


was found by selling in advance the boxes, with right to 
their use for life, but although this proved a very satisfactory 
financial expedient it set the whole Portoferraio society by 
the ears, for there were not enough boxes in the first tier to 
satisfy all the " high functionaries " and " great families." 
Hence much jealousy and bitterness, which Pons thought 
was ridiculous, for, said he, " We were all of the same height 
and grandeur. The Emperor levelled us." The Elbans 
thought there were gradations of level and quarrelled 
violently about these boxes. When the list had been 
finally made out, the proprietors formed themselves into a 
society which they called the " Accademia dei fortunati " 
(Academy of the fortunate ones), and they placed on the 
fa9ade of the building their motto : "A noi la sorte " (We 
have the luck). The reference was not, as might be supposed, 
to their having obtained boxes ; that was their right, as 
officials and leading citizens. Their good fortune consisted 
in the presence among them of the great Napoleon. 

On the curtain of the theatre was painted Apollo guarding 
his sheep, or, Napoleon and the Elbans. On the arch above, 
in a medallion, was a figure of fortune in a car — Napoleon 
and Elba again. It was not till the time of Carnival, in 
January, 1815, that the first performance took place, a 
company of strolling players having arrived. The Emperor 
himself was present in the central box. After the play a 
fancy ball was held upon the stage, and dancing was kept up 
till morning. Pauline enchanted all in her Neapolitan 
costume, which Napoleon can hardly have approved. At 
another ball she appeared in the non-political dress of a 
shepherdess. Pauline also took part in the amateur per- 
formances given in the small theatre which Napoleon con- 
structed in an outhouse of the Mulini Palace. 

Napoleon arranged for a number of balls to be given during 
Carnival. His instructions to Bert rand were as follows : 
" Portoferraio, 3rd January, 1815. On Sunday, the 8th of 
the month, there will be a ball in the grand ballroom. The 


invitations must be sent to-morrow evening ; submit the 
list to His Majesty to-morrow. The invitations must embrace 
the whole of the island, without, however, going beyond a 
limit of two hundred persons. They will be for nine o'clock. 
The refreshments will be without ices on account of the 
difficulty of getting them. There will be a supper which will 
be served at midnight. The total cost of all that must not 
be more than 1000 francs. 

" On Sunday, the 15th, the Academy might inaugurate its 
theatre and give a masked ball. On the 22nd following I 
might give another ball. On the 29th the theatre might give 
another masked ball. During Carnival, which lasts till the 
8th February, there will be two masked balls, one at the 
theatre and one at the palace. 

" As 200 persons is the maximum that we can invite, 
even supposing that the ballroom will hold that number, 
and that there are 200 persons in the island to invite, 150 
persons might be invited, always the same ones, to the first 
three balls, and the remaining 150 to the three last balls, 
so that they may have invitations to the end of 

The Guard ushered in Carnival by a procession of men 
wearing the usual masks and long noses. They buried 
Carnival on the 8th of February, with ceremony. INIallet, the 
Colonel, led the funeral cortege dressed as a Sultan, riding 
" Intendant," one of Napoleon's famous greys ; at his side rode 
a captain of the Polish Lancers, a tall thin man on a miser- 
able angular steed, as Don Quixote and Rosinante. Other 
officers followed in similar comic costumes. 

Various ladies went to Elba in the hope of finding favour 
with Napoleon. One of them, a certain Comtesse de Rohan 
^lignac, brought her son, and declared that the Emperor 
was the child's father. She was an adventuress, but con- 
trived to be received by Drouot, Bertrand, and even the 
Emperor himself. At the fete given on the occasion of the 

^ Correspoudauce, No. 21665. 


arrival of Pauline she received an invitation to the imperial 
table, but her attempt to obtain a seat there for her son did 
not succeed ; and receiving no encouragement to stay, she 
left Elba before Napoleon's departure. She confessed to the 
age of forty. 

Younger ladies played havoc with the French, and several 
marriages took place. Drouot himself, the austere phil- 
osopher, was overcome by the tender passion. Signorina 
Henrietta Vantini, daughter of one of Napoleon's chamber- 
lains, wished to learn French and Drouot wished to learn 
Italian ; and so they met to exchange conversation. Drouot 
was forty years of age, and he had never been more than 
passable in appearance. However, he was an officer of 
distinction, and a worthy man. The marriage was arranged. 
But Drouot, like Gourgaud at St. Helena, was devoted to his 
mother, and Drouot's mother refused her consent to the 
match. Drouot thereupon broke it off. Some said that 
Signorina Henrietta had been touched first, had become 
dreamy, and appeared to be in a decline, that her mother 
had told Drouot the state of the case, and that it was only 
then that he felt bound to present himself ; and there were 
persons capable of hinting that Drouot fell back upon his 
own mother in self-defence. However that may be, the young 
lady was charming and desirable in every way, and ultimately 
made a suitable marriage. 

Napoleon was much interested in what Pons called the 
"astonishing metamorphosis of General Drouot. He amused 
himself without reserve in the amorous awkwardness of the 
philosopher ; he even embroidered a little the stories he told 
about it."i We can well imagine it; and the embroidery 
would not be of the most refined nature. 

Pons thought that Napoleon was pleased at the rupture of 
the engagement ; and he says that Campbell put a political 
complexion upon the affair, followed it with great attention, 
and considered the conclusion an event of State importance. 

1 Tons, p. 173. 




From a French laricalure of 1S14 


The fact that Napoleon did not wish Drouot to contract a 
tie to Elba was certainly of some significance. 

Pauline and Drouot dined habitually at the Mulini Palace, 
the Bertrands seldom. Madame Bertrand was an un- 
punctual woman, and she had the rudeness to indulge that 
weakness even when invited to dine with Napoleon, with 
the result that, his meals being hurried over in great haste, 
she would arrive when dinner was nearly finished. As she 
could not accommodate herself to his time, Napoleon ceased 
to invite her. 

In the winter evenings Napoleon always had the society of 
his mother, his sister Pauline, and their suites. They would 
play games of cards, chess, reversi, dominoes, etc. When 
Napoleon was losing at cards he cheated without scruple, 
and all submitted with such grace as they could muster, 
except the stern Corsican lady, who in her decided tone 
would say, " Napoleon, you are cheating." To this he would 
reply : " Madame, you are rich, you can afford to lose, but 
I am poor and must win." The game would go on and again 
Letizia would insist that her son was attempting to rob her, 
which she would not tolerate. When matters had reached 
that point Napoleon put a summary end to the tracasserie 
by sweeping all the money on the table into his pocket and 
retiring with it into his bedroom. Next day Marchand 
would be given the money to return to its owners, with such 
justice and exactitude as might then be possible. 

The Bonapartes did not like paying up. Letizia did not 
cheat — perhaps she had not the ability — but she forgot to 
pay ; and the only one present who dared to remind her was 
her son, with the firm remark : " Pay your debts, Madame." 
What with the cheating of the Emperor and Madame Mere's 
forgetfulness in paying, these games must have had their 
painful moments for the members of the suite. 

Napoleon enjoyed music, though his taste was unculti- 
vated. Retiring early, usually at nine, he would give the 
signal by playing on the piano, with one finger, the first few 


bars of the symphony popularly known as " Haydn's Sur- 

Early in January there was a fall of snow, which the Elbans 
told their French visitors was a unique experience, but in 
this they were not exact, as a considerable fall may occur 
any winter. On these occasions the island seen from the 
mainland presents a beautiful spectacle on a clear winter's 
day. Except when the icy tramontana was blowing Napoleon 
and Pauline were often in their boats in the harbour of 
Portoferraio, and sometimes made short coasting expeditions. 
Pauline in general behaved as an invalid, being carried up 
and down the stairways in a sedan-chair ; but though her 
health certainly did need consideration, she was always 
capable of dancing half through the night. Pauline had 
tried to induce others of the family to join the Emperor at 
Elba. In a letter to her mother of the 25th June, 1814, she 
said that both Elise and Joseph had promised to join 
Napoleon : " We must not leave the Emperor quite alone ; 
it is now that he is unhappy that we should show him affec- 
tion; at least, that is my feeling." But the other members 
of the family kept aloof. They had been too mercilessly 
snubbed and bullied ; and there was still the disagreeable 
barrier of imperial etiquette. 

Napoleon was glad to have Pauline with him for the sake 
of her society, and also because her frivolous reputation and 
the round of gaiety which it excused, tended to divert 
attention from himself. The report was spread that the 
great Napoleon had degenerated, that he had taken to light 
amusements, and had lost the severity of his disposition. 
Though his vanity was hurt, yet the rumours of his decadence 
were welcome, in so far as they tended to lull Europe into 
security. Youth had always been on the side of Napoleon 
in his contests with the aged commanders of Europe. Fresh- 
ness of view ; quickness of decision ; courage and even reck- 
lessness in putting matters to the touch ; these boyish 
qualities had been, from the first, marked features of his 


character. In the trivial existence at Elba, it was natural 
enough that the light-hearted side of the man should lead to 
incidents which observers regarded as evidence of childish 
frivolity. Pons says that Napoleon loved gossip and scandal 
and favoured the society of those who gratified his inclina- 
tions. This tendency explained his preference for the 
society of a certain lady and her daughter at Longone. 
" There was absolutely nothing in them to fix seriously the 
attention of such a man as the Emperor," but they brought 
him all the small and spicy talk of the place, which he en- 
joyed. Under the influence of that kind of conversation 
Napoleon proceeded to acts which scandalised the good 
Elbans. He would walk with these ladies at deserted parts 
of the beach, " and upon the border of the sea, the Emperor 
amused himself with them at games which are called innocent, 
though their innocence has never been established."^ We 
can guess what they were. He pushed them into the sea, 
and laughed at their screams and resistance. That was all 
very well with Josephine at Bayonne, for she was his wife, 
but with other ladies — Elba was scandalised, and the world 

After a successful day's tunny fishing it was the custom 
to indulge in games on the beach. Napoleon on one occasion 
joined in. He even proposed one, the game of the ring, and 
suggested that the ribbons worn by the ladies present should 
be used for the cord. This was a public affair and it caused 
a sensation. Portoferraio talked of nothing else for some 
days, and every "lady" of the island claimed that Napoleon 
had asked for her ribbon, had talked with her, walked with 
her, and played with her games Avhose innocence had not 
been established. Further details, unhappil}^ are lacking, 
but we knov/ what Napoleon did to the Grand Marshal of 
the Five Palaces. He slyly put into his pocket several small 
live fish that he had picked up on the shore ; then he asked 
his victim for the use of his handkerchief, and when Bertrand 

' Pons, p. 2i8. 


put his hand on the cold and wet fish wrigghng in his pocket 
Napoleon enjoyed a good laugh. 

While he could unbend at times Napoleon had a permanent 
passion for the display of the important personage. In one 
of his lucid intervals he would say : " We are no longer at 
Paris," but he could not keep that fact always in mind. 
On another occasion he remarked that his Court was like 
that of Sancho Panza, but he would not abate the etiquette 
of the Tuileries.^ He wrote, two days after his arrival, that 
he would " suppress a number of offices which are useless in 
a small country and which have originated in the great 
organisation of France " ; but he created several new 

To three officials only did the Emperor accord the right 
of being addressed in correspondence in the first person : 
the Grand Marshal of the Palace, the Governor of the island 
of Elba, and the Treasurer. To the administrator of the 
mine Napoleon wrote, " The Emperor is aware," etc., and 
Pons immediately protested. The question was carefully 
considered, and it was decided that in Paris such an official 
as the administrator of the mines would not have had the 
privilege of " working personally with the Sovereign." 

All his dictation at Elba consisted of orders or decrees. 
In the " Correspondance " there are 115, and of these all 
except five are addressed to Bertrand or Drouot. The 
" Registre " contains 184 orders, of which all except six 
are to Bertrand, Drouot, or Peyrusse. All the 200 in Lord 
Crawford's collection are for Drouot. Bertrand, Drouot, 
and Peyrusse were in attendance nearly all day, and Drouot 
was constantly in Napoleon's society. When these orders 
were being dictated to a secretary the person to whom they 
were addressed was usually close at hand in the same building, 
perhaps in the next room. In most cases a verbal order 

^ " The Emperor of Portoferraio had his guard, his service, his hours for 
work, liis hours for receptions, ahsolutely the same as the Emperor of the 
Tuileries. The etiquette was the same^ but the crowd was less." Bache- 
ville, " Voyages des freres,'' p. 31. 


would have been better understood and more effective, 
while the saving of time would have been very substantial. 

Decisions about trifles, when written out as Orders of 
State, may come very near to the ridiculous. The Grand 
Marshal of the Palace presented to the Emperor the following 
report for His Majesty's decision : " Captain Paoli asks 
that there may be delivered one roll of bread each day for 
the sustenance of the shooting dogs. I have the honour to 
propose to Your Majesty to approve that thirty rolls of 
bread per month be delivered to Captain Paoli. The Grand 
Marshal Bertrand, Portoferraio, 6th January, 1815." In 
the margin was the Emperor's dictated decision : " Porto- 
ferraio, 17th January, 1815. The regulation bread must not 
be given to the shooting dogs ; bran bread must be prepared 
for the purpose. I do not order this from economy, but for 
decency. Captain Paoli will make arrangements accordingly 
with a baker. It will be paid for with the shooting expenses, 
for which I have placed on the budget 100 francs a month." ^ 

Here is an order to Bertrand : " Monsieur Count Bertrand, 
the G^enoese family which has just arrived, and also the two 
Guards at Saint Martin, will be under the order of the 
steward, who will himself be under the order of M. Lapi, 
from whom you will receive reports upon important matters 
which require to be decided." Communications thus had 
to pass from Napoleon to Bertrand, to M. Lapi, to the 
steward, and thus finally to the Guard. 

A note to Bertrand : " M. Allori is named guardian of the 
cisterns of Portoferraio. He is charged especially with the 
supervision of all work upon the cisterns, and will send in a 
daily account to the officer of the Engineers, who will send 
every week to the Governor a statement of the condition of 
the cisterns, of the amount of water which has been taken 
from them during the week, and what remains. The Governor 
will send in this account to the Emperor." ^ The Emperor 

1 Correspondance, No. 215G7. 
^ Correspoiulauce, No. 21G68. 


and King of Elba, having his chamberlains and, orderly 
officers in attendance, with the Grand Marshal of the Palace 
and the Governor of the kingdom of Elba close at hand, 
dictated to his secretary an order to be delivered to the 
Grand Marshal of the Palace by one of the officers in attend- 
ance. The Grand Marshal of the Palace would send the 
order by another official to a certain Allori to inform him 
that he had been appointed to the new post of " Guardian 
of the cisterns of Portoferraio." He was to send in a daily 
account to the Engineer officer, who was to send in a weekly 
account to the Governor of the kingdom of Elba, who would 
forward it to the Emperor and King of Elba. All this was 
in the manner of " the great organisation of France." What 
happened at Elba was that when, as was often the case, no 
salary was attached to the new duties, they were not accom- 

The personnel of Napoleon's navy amounted altogether 
to about 100 officers and sailors. On the 22nd May he 
issued the order : " Drouot will bring together the Com- 
missary of the Marine, the Captain of the Fort, and the 
Commander of the Fleet, to advise as to the division of the 
ship's companies."^ Four men to consult together on a 
matter which would have been better executed by one. 

To decide how the rations for the Marine should be ob- 
tained, whether (1) by a contractor for all the rations, or 
(2) by a money payment to the captains of the ships who 
would feed their men, or (3) by obtaining the bread from the 
director of the land rations through the Commissary of War, 
and the remainder of the ration through a contractor, 
Napoleon appointed a " Council of Marine composed of the 
Commander, the Commissary of Marine, the Commissary 
of War, and the Captain of the Port."' Here was another 
committee of four, each man feeling that he was appointed 
to keep a watchful eye on his colleagues. 

^ Correspondance, No. 21570. 
' Correspondance, No. 21673. 


When in 1796 the Directory proposed to give to General 
Bonaparte, Commander of the Army of Italy, a colleague, 
he replied : " One bad general is better than two good ones." 
But that aphorism he applied only to his own case. In 
Spain his policy was that of the jealous and suspicious 
Directory. He divided the army among several marshals 
because he was afraid of the prestige and power that a single 
commander might have obtained. He distrusted everj'body 
but himself. 

He wrote to Bertrand : "I desire that in future all the 
furniture which may come from Genoa or Leghorn shall be 
accepted in an official report made by the valet upholsterer, 
the caretaker, and Mr. Deschamps, who will decide between 
them the question of quality and price. These decisions 
will be sent to the Commissaries, who will see that attention 
is paid to their being forwarded. Two tables from Genoa 
have been received which are already incapable of being 
used. I shall take the small desk which has come from 
Leghorn, if it has not gone : it will be of use for me at Saint 

When the secretary had copied out this order Napoleon 
initialled it and gave it to one of his orderlies, who took it 
to the Grand Marshal, who had three copies made by his 
secretary, and sent one to each of the officials concerned, who 
were probably in the Mulini Palace all the time. The com- 
mittee of three would then arrange a meeting ; if the small 
desk had not " gone " by the time these preliminaries had 
been completed, the committee would inspect it, draw up 
and sign a written report as to its value, and send it to the 
Commissaries, who between them would then deliver the 
desk. The price would be that of Napoleon's agents, with- 
out regard to the demands of the vendor. That was the 
course Napoleon ordered and desired. What actually 
happened, no doubt, was that Deschamps and the vendor 
made a bargain. 

* Registre, No. 90. 


At the age of nineteen Napoleon wrote out a Constitution 
for the Calotte of the regiment of La F^re, in which he was 
then a Lieutenant. The Calotte was a meeting of the Lieu- 
tenants of a regiment, to consider some question of conduct 
which may have arisen among them. Napoleon's Constitu- 
tion — his first — contained provisions for the creation of a 
number of new officials of the Calotte, including a Grand 
Master of the Ceremonies — Bertrand, as it were — two 
Infallibles, and two Juniors. Napoleon's chief anxiety was 
to prevent these officials from pulling together. He reported 
that as a result of his regulations : " You will not therefore 
have any more reason, Gentlemen, to fear that an interest 
contrary to your own may unite them." And again, " The 
Grand Master of the Ceremonies should not be too close to 
the persons of power." Even the young officers who had just 
joined were suspect. They were not to be allowed full 
voting power, because they could not be forced to unite 
except by a corrupt inducement. 

This Calotte Constitution was based upon distrust of the 
people and of the officials. If the new arrivals, the plebs of 
the society, vote together it is from a corrupt motive ; if the 
officials become on good terms with each other it is to get 
the better of the members of the society. A good Constitu- 
tion therefore must limit the rights of voting ; it must 
provide for a large number of officials to act as checks 
against each other : it must contain elaborate and rigid 
rules for their conduct ; and to please everybody and to 
emphasise their importance the officials should be given 
high-sounding names. That was precisely the system of 
the Man at Elba. It was that of the bureaucratic autocrat. 

On the small stage of Elba the absurdity of this grandilo- 
quent officialdom was remarked by every observer. Gour- 
gaud, when told by Bertrand at St. Helena that " His Majesty 
dictated letters about the purchase of fowls, ducks, meat, 
and all eatables as if he was dealing at Paris with affairs of 
the greatest importance," could hardly believe it. Sad and 


pathetic as it is to reflect that this was the Emperor 
Napoleon, the humiliation experienced by the members of 
the suite on receiving such orders also deserves commisera- 
tion. " We were more unhappy at Portoferraio than here," 
continued Bertrand. " We had quitted the finest throne in 
the world, insulted by all, to go to a tiny little island." ^ 
The title assumed by the conqueror of Europe, " Napoleon, 
Emperor and King of the island of Elba," seemed specially 
designed to cast ridicule on the servants as well as on their 
master. Napoleon came to see the degradation of such a 
parody and in the end cast it off, but that he should ever 
have consented to it is deplorable. 

Napoleon had for some years been suffering from a mental 
disease known as megalomania, colloquially called " swelled 
head." He was still the greatest military commander of 
the day. Though naturally he had no longer the energy of 
his youth, he could still prepare a campaign and conduct 
a battle with his old ability ; but there was now a clot of un- 
natural Hapsburg blood upon his brain, M^hich produced 
conceit and arrogance, with their results — lack of caution, 
waste of time, indifference to the losses to which he sub- 
jected his armies. The Commander now treated opposition 
as only an Emperor should, with disdain. To speak of 
possible failure was lese-majesU. He said so plainly to 
Montalivet who in 1814, when affairs were desperate, adverted 
to the Bourbon aspirations. The Emperor told him sharply 
that merely to mention the name was an offence to his person. 
The injurious effect of living in this rarefied air is shown by 
the significant fact that after his admission into the bosom 
of the Hapsburg family every campaign ended in defeat. 
The husband of the Archduchess Marie Louise had no 
success in war. Crippled in 1812, driven off in 1813, de- 
throned in 1814, annihilated in 1815, that was the record of 
the son-in-law of the Emperor Francis. 

The Austrian marriage ruined him because it paralysed 
' C.oui-gaud, "Journal Incdit/' Vol. U, p. 221. 




his genius by casting into it the self-complacence of the 
Royal Personage. To all unanointed observers it was plain 
that, believing himself to belong to the race of gods, he was 
cheerfully attempting more than a man could achieve. 

At Elba the symptoms of the disease were exhibited to a 
distressing extent by his imperial decrees about his ducks 
and his dogs, his two brigades formed from five mules, and 
the rest of the pitiful tale. 

One is reminded of the career of another man of Italian 
race, the Tribune of the People, Cola di Rienzo, better known 
to us as Rienzi. As the result of a revolution there was no 
Pope at Rome and the city was in the hands of a set of 
rascally, licentious nobles ; just as France after the execu- 
tion of Louis XVI was misgoverned by the Directors. Rienzi, 
like Napoleon, was a reader, and had a lively imagination, 
and his vanity and ambition made him a hater of the nobles 
and supporter of the people. In the absence of the Pope he 
was raised by the people to the position of the head of the 
Government. He began well, curtailing the power of the 
nobles and abating many abuses. But he was too successful, 
became inflated with pride, had himself knighted and crowned 
on the 15th August (Napoleon's birthday), gave himself 
extravagant titles, and declared that he was filled with the 
Holy Ghost (the " destiny " of Napoleon). He was now a 
mere tyrant. Having been very lean in figure he became 
excessively fat. " It is said," wrote Muratqri, " that in person 
he was of old quite meagre ; he had become enormously fat 
and jovial as an abbot." Napoleon had been very thin, in 
his youth, and became later, according to several observers, 
" like a fat priest." Accused of the intention of restoring 
the Empire in his own person, and thus making himself the 
chief monarch in Europe, Rienzi was overthrown and fled 
from Rome. But Rome relapsed into disorder, and he 
returned (as it were from Elba) for a second lease of power. 
But the Romans were now no longer capable of enduring his 
tyranny, and the end soon came ; he was killed by the mob. 


The story is oddly similar to that of Napoleon in some of 
the details ; in principle it is identical. Rienzi and Napoleon 
were Italians. In youth they had the lean and hungry look 
of ambitious men. Desire for personal success made them 
hate those above them and take the part of the plebs. The 
head of the State having been removed by a revolution 
gave the opportunity of obtaining the vacant post. After 
a short period of good government the inherent vanity and 
ambition obtained complete control. They became self- 
indulgent tyrants with extravagant desires of world domi- 
nation ; even in body they became swollen. Sudden success, 
accompanied by despotic power, trying enough to all men, 
is overpowering to the Italian, causing a disastrous growth 
of pride, tyranny, and self-indulgence. 

It has been supposed that Napoleon was a man of no 
heart. Pons, who studied his character with care, could not 
understand how such an idea could have arisen : he said 
that Napoleon's first impulse was that of the heart, which 
he quickly controlled ; that he tried to hide his feelings, not 
always with success, for he could not speak of his son without 
being visibly moved ; that " his heart was as weak as his 
mind was strong. One could have made him do many 
things by appealing to his feelings."^ 

Allowing for some extravagance of expression, there is 
much to be said in favour of this unusual verdict. Letizia 
told Pons that as a child Napoleon would share his toys and 
sweets with other children, without demanding a return. 
As a man he was most generous to all his old friends, while 
to his enemies he was without rancour, and was often mag- 
nanimous. As a young officer he was considered a good 
comrade and he had warm friends. In his Calotte essay he 
asked : " What unlucky man is there who has not two 
intimate acquaintances among his comrades ? " Though he 
became afterwards, as he himself said, " zm elre politique," 
the man beneath cannot have entirely changed. Few 

' Pons, pp. 125, 188, 198. 


commanders have been adored as he was by his soldiers. 
No heartless man could have written the following letter, 
from General Bonaparte to his brother Joseph, in 1795, 
when the Bonaparte fortunes were at a low ebb : "In what- 
ever position fortune and events may place thee, thou knowest 
well, my friend, that thou canst not have a better and dearer 
friend who desires most sincerely thy happiness. Life is a 
light dream which is soon dissipated. If thou dost depart 
and dost think it is for some time " (here there is the mark of 
a tear on the manuscript) " send me thy portrait. We have 
lived so many years together, so closely united, that our 
hearts are intermingled. Thou knowest better than anyone 
how entirely mine is given to thee. I feel while tracing these 
lines an emotion of which I have had few experiences in my 
life. I know that it will be long before we meet " (another 
tear stain) " and I cannot continue my letter. Good-bye, 
my friend. Napoleon." Meneval, who was brought much in 
contact with the Emperor, declared that he had often been 
the witness and the confidant of his feelings, which showed 
a keen and expansive sensibility. 

Napoleon said once that he had never loved an5^body 
except Joseph perhaps a little. It is not easy for a man to 
judge his own character, even on such a point. Napoleon 
was in the habit of assuming the part of a being removed 
above the influence of all human emotions. But he wrote 
letters to Josephine which expose the affectation. Many 
reputedly tender-hearted men are incapable of such a love 
as Napoleon had for Josephine. He was very fond of Pauline ; 
no man ever praised more highly his mother ; and in spite 
of their treachery he always spoke tenderly of Elise and 
Caroline. He was devoted to Marie Louise and made even 
that self-centred individual fancy that she loved him. His 
love for his son was noticed by many observers. One day he 
dropped by accident a tobacco-box on which was a picture 
of the King of Rome. Though no longer able to stoop with- 
out effort he picked it up with alacrity, and finding it was 


not broken exclaimed : " Mon pauvre petit chou " (My poor 
little darling). He added : " I have in me some, indeed 
much, of the tenderness of a mother, and I am not ashamed 
of it. I should never believe in the affection of a man who 
being a father did not love his children."^ The hard fate of 
his son, his Astyanax, was a source of intense sorrow to 
Napoleon. Yet he has been regarded as an unnatural 
monster, a being all brain and no heart. The sounder and 
keener the brain the truer and more active must be the 
beating of the heart. 

In his public life Napoleon was a cruel and callous man, 
indifferent to human suffering, and contemptuous of mankind. 
He took into his private life much of his egotistical and tyran- 
nical manner, but he was a man of warm feelings for all that, 
and he showed it whenever the politician had been exorcised. 

Though Pons was a great admirer he was not a blind 
worshipper. He observes : " The Emperor gave encourage- 
ment to intriguers by giving ear to them. He listened will- 
ingly to what was told him. He was always on guard. What 
a sad condition is that which induces a man to regard the 
bad side of human nature as precisely human nature itself." ^ 
The quarrels which went on around Napoleon's person were 
the result of his encouragement of delators. It was known 
that he despised all mankind, and was ready and anxious to 
believe evil of all his attendants. Each one denounced his 
colleague and knew that he was being denounced in turn. 
Napoleon himself created that deadly atmosphere, in which 
he could not permanently thrive ; for loyal support was neces- 
sary to him and he killed it. 

Pons makes the following significant remarks : " The 
Emperor had his faults, prejudices, and caprices. Amongst 
his faults the Emperor had one which by its untoward 
character and frequent appearance was always wounding, 
and which without doubt was the cause of the hatreds which 

^ Pons, p. 6y. The story reached Paris. (Firmiu-Didot, " Koyaute ou 
Empire," p. 43.) 2 Pons, p. 02. 


were so inexorably relentless in compassing his fall. The 
Emperor would not get in a rage, even when he was indignant, 
but in a first impulse of hastiness, he would use words which 
caused most cruel wounds which did not cease to bleed. 
The Emperor was often aware that he had wounded, and 
when he realised the hurt he had given, he endeavoured at 
once to cure it. He did not always succeed."^ 

This passage explains much. Napoleon would say things, 
when he was angry, which few men could forgive. He made 
many enemies, and destroyed many friendships, by grossly 
offensive remarks. He thought he was powerful enough to 
indulge in the feelings of the moment, and gave vent to 
Q brutalities of speech which seldom occur in civilised society. 
When he found himself in need of friends he had to pay the 

1 Pons, p. 191. 



y4 IMONG those Avho were attracted to Elba by the 

A% presence of the Emperor there were intriguing 
J^ ^ Italians with their schemes for a Napoleonic 
kingdom of Italy, and Corsicans, with an occasional 
Frenchman, seeking employment. The visitors who had no 
personal object in view, save that of gazing at a prodigy, 
were English. Some of them were admitted to the privilege 
of private audience. Napoleon delivered to them the 
explanation of his conduct, the political manifesto which 
he desired should be published to the world. 

The official position of Neil Campbell, and his permanent 
residence on the island, made him the chief recipient of these 
declarations, which he duly reported to his Government. 

Viscount Ebrington, afterwards Earl of Fortescue, was 
received at 8 p.m. on the 6th December, for three hours of 
standing, or walking up and down the room. On the 8th he 
was invited to dinner at seven, and the conversation lasted 
till eleven.^ 

Major Vivian and Mr. Wildman arrived from Leghorn in 
the Partridge on the 22nd January, 1815. After the necessary 
overtures through Bertrand they were received by Napoleon 
from 8.30 p.m. to 9.45 p.m. on the 26th January, in the 
Mulini Palace ; the room of the ground floor into which they 
were ushered was fitted up with the faded yellow furniture 

' Ebrington, Viscount, " Memorandum of two conversations with the 
Emperor Napoleon on the 6th and 8th of December, 1814," 182.'3. 



from Elise's palace at Piombino. Vivian published an 
account of the interview in the year 1839. He and his friend 
were attired in the uniform of the Cornwall Militia, to which 
they belonged, and Napoleon began by making several 
enquiries about the corps. He also asked if the Prince 
Regent, as Duke of Cornwall, had rights over the mines, 
and asked how much he got, and was told it was £10,000 a 

Of Napoleon's manner and appearance Vivian writes : — 

" We stood during the whole time, I may say almost 
ncz a ncz ; for I had my back against the table, and he had 
advanced close to me, looking full in my face. His strain and 
manner were as familiar and good-natured as possible, so 
very much so that I felt no hesitation whatever in putting 
any question to him. He had on a green coat, cut off in front, 
faced with the same colour, and trimmed with red at the 
skirts, and wore the stars of two orders. Under his left arm 
he held his hat, and in his hand a plain snuff-box, from which 
he every now and then took a pinch ; but as he occasionally 
sneezed, it appeared to me that he was not addicted to snuff- 
taking. His hair was without powder and quite straight ; 
his shape, inclined to corpulence."^ 

On the 12th December, 1814, Lord John Russell had an 
interview which he referred to in a short letter written at the 
time, as follows : — 

"He is in person stout and very fat, without much majesty 
in his air and still less terror in his look — he was, indeed, 
extremely good-natured, and during the two hours I was alone 
with him talked and encouraged me to talk on every subject. 
He is of opinion that there will be no war in Europe at present, 
but he thinks it likely that the Congress will spin out a long 
time, and that Russia will keep Poland, and Prussia Saxony, 

' Vivian, J. H, "iMInutes of a conversation with Napoleon Bonaparte at 
Elba in January, 1815," p. 25. 


From a sketch taken by a„ officer on the spot. In the collection of A. M. Broadley 


as it were in abeyance. He is very gay and certainly not 
unhappy, but at the same time I do not think him easy in 
his present situation, and very far indeed from the tran- 
quilHty of a philosopher. He spends his time chiefly in 
building and furnishing a country house about two miles 
from his wretched palace in Portoferraio."^ 

Lord John wrote in his diary : " His manner is very good- 
natured, and seems studied to put one at one's ease by its 
familiarity ; his smile and laugh are very agreeable ; he 
asks a number of questions without object, and often repeats 
them, a habit which he has no doubt acquired during fifteen 
years of supreme command. To this I should also attribute 
the ignorance he seems to show at times of the most common 

Fifty-four years later, in 1868, Earl Russell, as he then 
had become, Avrote, for private circulation, an account of the 
interview. Lord Russell's chief recollection was that 
Napoleon appeared to be alarmed regarding his safety owing 
to the report that he was to be sent to St. Helena, and that 
he seemed to be meditating some enterprise. 

On 19th September, 1814, a party of Englishmen, consisting 
of Colonel Lemoine, R.A., Colonel Douglas, Major Maxwell, 
R.A., Captain Smith, and Mr. Scott, an undergraduate at 
Cambridge, went to Porto Longone, where the Emperor 
was at that time, in the hope of seeing him. Napoleon agreed 
to receive them out of doors, on his return from a ride. Mr. 
Scott, the chronicler of the meeting, writes : — 

" We stood in a lane about five yards wide. The Emperor 
approached. We drew back and formed a line on his right, 
standing uncovered. He stopped his horse short and touched 
his hat. 

" The first impression on my mind was : can this be the 
great Napoleon ? Is that graceless figure — so clumsy, so 

' The original letter is iu the collection of tlie Earl of Crawford. 


awkward — the figure that awed emperors and kings ? It is 
surely impossible ; and that countenance ; it is totally 
devoid of expression ; it appears, even, to indicate stupidity ! 
Such was the first impression, and thougli I soon found reason 
to change my opinion concerning his countenance, I still 
continue to think the figure of Napoleon very unmartial, 
clumsy, and awkward. He looks about forty-five years of 
age, has a very large corporation, and his thighs are large, 
quite out of proportion. 

" He wore a cock hat low over his eyes, which in some mea- 
sure contributes to give him the stupid appearance at first 
sight. This hat is very high behind, low before. Its brownness 
seemed to indicate that it had stood many a campaign. 
It bore a cockade of white and red. He wore a great military 
coat faced with red ; the skirts of it began to slope off as high 
as the stomach ; above that it was close-buttoned, and as his 
neck is very short, one could scarcely see his black stock. He 
had two shabby silver epaulets, a shabby star on his breast 
as Commander of the Legion of Honour, and three small 
decorations of the Orders of the Legion of Honour, Reunion, 
and Iron Crown. Under his coat appeared a red sash, the 
Grand Cord of the Legion. He had a white waistcoat, white 
breeches, and white gloves. His boots were old and shabby ; 
his silver spurs were fastened with black buckles. He rode a 
small Corsican brown horse, with holsters in his saddle and 
a dirty bridle and bit. Though his clothes were old, his 
person looked clean and neat. 

*' He leans very forward in riding. While he was talking to 
us his horse suddenly lifted up his hind foot, and Napoleon 
turned quickly round, as if he were nervous. He took snuff 
only once during the twenty-two minutes he talked with us ; 
he took it out of a small black box on which were three 
cameos. His hand was particularly white, his fingers small 
and tapering. His hair is black and hangs down very long 
in candle-ends (to use a term more expressive than elegant) 
over his coat-collar. Yet it is clean looking. His eyes are 


blue and small, eyebrows black and rather large, his nose 
and mouth handsome, and of moderate size, his chin not 
very pointed, his complexion pale, rather yellowish, and has 
much of that appearance which I might call doughy. His 
forehead is square and prominent. He spoke quickly and 
incessantly. His voice is deep, and he speaks rather 

The conversation was of little interest, being confined to 
personal matters. Napoleon asked each officer in turn as to 
his corps, his rank, and his active service, and ascertained 
that Scott was at " Camerige," as the Emperor pronounced 
the word. Scott concludes his account thus : — 

" During the whole of our interview there was a constant 
half -smile on his countenance, and he has the air of perfect 
contentment. His eye is remarkably expressive and quick ; 
his eye and voice inspire respect, and his manner indicated 
great talent ; but his smile gives confidence and ease to those 
who hear him. My companions were unanimous in the 
opinion that he has more the appearance of a clever, crafty 
priest than of a hero. His figure is decidedly the reverse 
of heroic."^ 

Mr. G. F. Vernon, m.p., a cousin of Lord Holland, arrived 
at Portoferraio on 18th November, 1814, with a friend, 
Mr. Fazakerley. While waiting to be received by Bertrand, 
Vernon remarked to the secretary : " It is said that Napoleon 
has become much fatter here." " Yes," said the secretary, 
" in his place I would have made myself swollen with a 
pistol shot. "2 

They went to San Martino, and while there the Emperor 
arrived in a carriage, and allowed them to be introduced, A 
political conversation of some interest ensued, from which 

' Printed in the "Daily Mail/' 24th February, 1909. 
" " Sketch of a conversation with Napoleon at Elba," by ti. K. Vernon. 
"Miscellanies of Philobibliou Society," Vol. VIII, 1863. 



some quotations are given in the ensuing pages. Napoleon 
and the two visitors were compelled, by reason of Imperial 
etiquette, to stand for nearly four hours while the talk pro- 
ceeded, and the Englishmen were nmch fatigued before it 
was over. Being shown over the San Martino house, they 
observed in Napoleon's small bedroom a miniature of the 
King of Rome. 

Mr. Frederick Darling, m.p., son of Lord Glenbervie, was 
also received. " Why have you come ? " asked Napoleon. 
" To see a great man ? " " Rather to see a wild beast," was the 

The political pronouncements of Napoleon to his English 
visitors at Elba have been too much neglected. Though this 
Elban message does not compare, in elaboration and scope, 
with the legend that was created at St. Helena, it has a special 
value of its own in revealing the mental attitude of Napoleon 
at the time. He did not consider his career finally closed. 
He was not engaged upon memoirs. He was occupied with 
the cause of his fall, and the prospects before him, and was not 
entirely absorbed, as at St. Helena, in explaining the past. 
Though he touched upon many phases of his career, it is 
only with his pronouncements on the living issues of the 
time that we are here concerned ; and all that he said to 
his English visitors concerning England is also of special 

He told Lord Ebrington that he wished to keep the Peace 
of Amiens, but that the English broke it ; that if Fox had 
lived there would have been no war.^ To Mr. Vernon he 
said that the cause of the breaking of the Treaty was that 
he would not agree to the treaty of commerce proposed 
by England, which would have been disadvantageous to 
France. 2 

The Treaty of Amiens was nullified by the warlike 
aggressions of Napoleon. He may have desired, at the time, 
a prolongation of the peace until he had strengthened his hold 

' EbriugtoUj p. 22. ^ Vernon^ p. 28. 


on France and extended his power on the Continent. But 
war with England was his settled policy, and he would have 
forced it whenever the time appeared propitious. 

The remark about Fox came from an ignorance about 
English political conditions which was common on the 
Continent in his day and is still prevalent. The belief that 
the Opposition would, when in power, be prepared to make 
a one-sided or humiliating peace, has been one of the stock 
delusions about England. Napoleon held it firmly, and it 
was one of his most disastrous mistakes. He was always 
expecting that if war lasted long enough, a peace-at-any-price 
party would have its turn in England, and then he would be 
able to do as he liked with English interests. 

He said that his detention of English travellers was in 
retaliation for the English having made prizes at sea before 
declaration of war. " I am sure that you thought in England 
that, after all, I was right, and had shown character in what 
I did. Eh, I am something of a corsair like yourselves." 

The seizure of vessels before declaration of war was not 
unusual, nor against international law ; the detention of 
travellers was both. Napoleon seized all English of both 
sexes whom he could lay his hands upon, in France or Italy, 
and kept them in custody as prisoners of war for eleven 
years, until they were released by his fall. Such unheard-of 
brutality was in flagrant defiance of the usages of all civilised 
nations. He thought the English would admire him for what 
he himself described as a piratical action ; and he desired the 
respect of the people whom he regarded as fellow-pirates. 
But perhaps these remarks were merely an endeavour to save 
face, for in 1815 he declined, when the proposal was made, 
to order a repetition of the barbarity. 

He often spoke to Englishmen of the proposed invasion of 
England. He told Campbell that " he never intended to 
make the attempt without a superiority of fleet to protect 
the flotilla. This superiority would have been obtained for 
a few days by leading our fleet out to the West Indies, and 


suddenly returning. If they arrived three or four days before 
ours in the Channel, it would be sufficient. The flotilla 
would immediately push out, accompanied by the fleet, and 
as he should march immediately to London, he should prefer 
landing on the coast of Kent. He had 100,000 men in all." 
Asked what he proposed to do after arriving in London, he 
replied that " it was difficult to answer that question, for a 
people with spirit and energy like the English was not subdued 
even by taking possession of their capital. He would cer- 
tainly have separated Ireland from Great Britain, and the 
occupation of the capital would have been a death-blow to our 
funds, credit, and commerce. He had made all his calcula- 
tions and reduced his landing to a perfect certainty. On 
being pressed whether he had not merely been preparing 
an army for other operations, he denied it, and said he 
certainly intended to put his plans into execution." 

On another occasion he said : " This danger must always 
hang over England. An invasion is perfectly practicable 
whenever France can assemble a larger army than England, 
and at the same time obtain, for a week or ten days, the 
command of the Channel with her fleet. On this account 
the formation of the port of Cherbourg is a serious considera- 
tion for England. Our possessions are so extensive, that we 
must have fleets to guard them, and to watch the movements 
which may be directed against them. While engaged in this, 
it is easy to mislead so great a proportion of the British Navy, 
that the French must infallibly obtain that superiority in 
the Channel which is required for a time, in order to effect 
the invasion. He meant to command the troops in person. 
No British force could be collected in sufficient numbers to 
oppose him ; and success he considered certain." 

Although at another time he said that he never intended 
to invade England, and was merely luring on Austria to 
attack him, it must be supposed that, if protected by the 
French fleet at the proper time, he would have made the 
attempt, because in thnt case it would have been impossible 


to have declined the enterprise, after so much display, with- 
out serious loss of reputation. Whether he really wished to 
be given the chance is very doubtful. The invasion project 
gave him an excuse for the creation of the superb army 
which he turned away from the Channel for the conquest of 

He was mistaken in supposing that Villeneuve had decoyed 
Nelson away to the West Indies, and that the return of the 
French fleet would have given him the temporary command 
of the Channel. Nelson followed Villeneuve in order to bring 
him to battle, and to protect the West Indian islands. He 
had satisfied himself that Barham had ample strength left 
to prevent a crossing. If Villeneuve had appeared in the 
Channel he would have been destroyed. 

To Mr. Vernon he said that he did not make peace at 
Dresden because he thought he could hold the line of the 
Elbe. " However, I do not assert that if the same situation 
were to arise again I would not act in another manner." ^ 
In short, he miscalculated his strength. 

" France is nothing without Antwerp, for while Brest and 
Toulon are blockaded, a fleet can be equipped there, wood 
being brought from Poland. He never would consent to 
give it up, having sworn at his coronation not to diminish 
France. ... It was a great object for England to have 
Antwerp in possession of her former ally, Holland, and taken 
from France. He was perfectly ready to have made peace 
at Chatillon if Antwerp had been left to France. It was 
England, therefore, that prevented the peace." In contra- 
diction to this, he said one day that he had himself openly 
asserted that if he made peace at Chatillon he would not be 
able to keep it for three months. ^ 

Napoleon was never ready to make peace, either at Chatil- 
lon in 1814 or on any other occasion, except as a conqueror. 
In moments of depression and disaster he turned reluctantly 

^ Vernon, p. 37. 

- Ussher, p. 62. Vernon, p. 37. Campbell, pp. 315, 333. 


to such thoughts, but he soon recovered and was as defiant 
as ever. In 1814 the Allies were no longer desirous of peace 
except on their own terms, and there was no reason to suppose 
that he would ever accept them. 

" The soldiers of the army were naturally attached to me, 
as I was their comrade. I had some success with them, 
and they knew that I recompensed them well, but now they 
feel that they count for nothing. There are at present 
700,000 men in France who have carried arms, and the last 
campaigns have served only to show how superior they are 
to all their enemies. They do justice to the valour of our 
troops, but despise all the rest."^ 

" There could be no quiet in Europe if the French were 
humiliated, and reduced out of proportion with the other 
leading Powers. England with all her wealth, her foreign 
possessions, and her maritime power ! Austria with all Italy ! 
Prussia with Mayence, and as far as Luxembourg ! The 
French at Danzig were not so extraordinary as the Prus- 
sians at Luxembourg. What a humiliation for France 
after so many years of preponderance gained by her glory. 
Holland with Belgium ! There would be a violent reaction of 
the whole nation before five years were over, similar to what 
took place at the Revolution, in consequence of their humilia- 
tion and so great a diminution of frontier. The Rhine was the 
natural boundary. Every man in France considered it so, 
and this opinion would never alter. He knew, by persons 
from France, that there was a universal disgust there at their 
present humiliation, and that the Bourbons had very few 
partisans in the army, and among the bulk of the popula- 

" He pointed out, as he had frequently done before, the 
impolicy of humiliating France, that the ferment there would 
soon break out one day or other, and the sovereigns of 
Europe would then perhaps, for their own interest and repose, 

1 Lord Ebrinj^ton, p. 7. ^ Campbell, pp. 315-17. 




find it necessary to call him in to tranquillise the country. . . . 
The present government is too feeble. The Bourbons should 
mpke war as soon as possible, in order to establish themselves 
upon the throne. With such an army as they could assemble 
would not be difficult to recover Belgium. It is only for 
t le British there that the French army has the smallest awe." ^ 

" He said he would have given up Germany, Holland, 
Italy, and Spain, but would never have agreed to leave 
I nee smaller than he found her. Belgium he excluded. 
He said that a battle lost before Brussels would open the 
road to Holland and Antwerp ; he supposed England wanted 
Antwerp. "2 

These conversations took place in November and December, 
1814, and January, 1815. Earlier, in May, 1814, Napoleon 
had spoken in the same tone, but had given the Bourbons 
six months only. After citing the " humiliations " of France, 
he had said : " The people of France will not remain tranquil 
under it, not even six months after the foreign Powers have 
quitted Paris, "^ 

Although he had now to admit that the Revolution had not 
come as soon as he had expected, he still believed that it 
would come, and then he would be sent for, " to tranquillise 
the country." And evidently, if he were to be called upon, 
the first thing he would do would be to retrieve the humilia- 
tions France had sustained, by giving play to the martial 
ardour of the nation, and leading the army to the recovery 
of Belgium and Holland. A battle gained before Brussels 
would give him Holland and Antwerp. While he was sup- 
posed to be absorbed in the organisation and management of 
his petty little kingdom, he was, in fact, planning the Waterloo 

At St. Helena Napoleon told his followers that already 
at Fontainebleau he had thought of the return from Elba. 

» Campbell, pp. 329, 347. '^ Vivian, p. 17. 

* Ussher, p. 87. Campbell, p. 2i2. 


" The abdication of Fontainebleau had been merely con- 
ditional, in my inmost thoughts. Davout, the Due de 
Bassano, and Caulaincourt were aware of it. They alone 
were the confidants of my hope in the resurrection of the 
Empire ; they believed, with me, that the Bourbons were 
incorrigible, that they would come back as they were when 
they left, feudal kings." ^ Campbell reports that, on one 
occasion, after dinner, he " continued the conversation with 
great agitation of manner until midnight, having then been 
for three hours on his legs. He seemed to regret his abdica- 
tion. Had he known that it was owing to the treachery of 
Augereau only that that part of his army fell back behind 
Lyons, he would have united his own army to it, even after 
Marmont's capitulation. ^ . . . Napoleon certainly regrets 
that he gave up the contest, and has almost declared to me 
that, had he known the spirit and power of Augereau's army, 
and that its exertions were only paralysed by the defection 
of that Marshal, he would have joined it and carried the war 
into Italy." On another occasion, however, he said that 
" he had now no regret in his abdication, nor yet in his 
refusal of the last propositions for peace. He would do the 
same over again. "^ 

He might have been still in France and have prolonged 
for some years the conflict, but against united Europe he 
could not hope in the circumstances of the time to prevail in 
the end. " I decided to spare France a civil war, and I 
consider myself dead, for to die and to be here are the same 

" Here he related the view of affairs which had induced 
him to abdicate. He could have supported the war for years, 
and perhaps have carried it out of the kingdom. But although 
the people would have flocked to his standard, and the army 
would have stood firm, this would have been the ruin of 
France. With the armies of Blucher and Schwartzenberg 

1 Recits, Vol. I, p. 225. 2 Campbell, p. 223. 

3 Campbell, pp. 243, 333. * Vernon, p. 30. 


in Paris, Wellington pressing forward from Toulon, Augereau 
beaten at Lyons (for he did not then know that he was 
indisposed to exert himself at all), a faction in Paris against 
him, and the Senate weak enough to assemble by the orders 
of their enemy, he had no hesitation in descending from the 
throne, as it appeared to be the only way of saving France. 
But he would never have done so had not Marmont deserted 
him, except, indeed, on the regency of the Empress and her 
son being secured. In his own person he could not even 
consent to any peace except according to such a treaty as that 
proposed at Frankfort. It was not for the sake of a crown 
that he had continued the war, but for the glory of his country, 
for plans which he now saw no prospect of realising. He 
wished to have made France the first nation in the world, 
but now it was at an end."^ 

From all this it may be concluded that while Napoleon 
regretted that he had not made peace in 1813, he still could 
not imagine himself agreeing to the Chatillon terms of 1814, 
which would have left France smaller than he found her. 
No doubt he regretted also, though he did not admit it, 
having left Paris undefended in 1814 ; but when the city had 
capitulated he could see no alternative to abdication. He 
buoyed himself up from the Fontainebleau days with the 
belief — partly genuine and partly forced — that his turn would 
come again. 

To make sure that his hopes should not be suspected, he 
frequently used the phrase, " Je suis un homme mort.'' 
Campbell reports : " He repeated this latter expression 
several times." And again : " I do not think of anything 
beyond my little island. I could have sustained the war for 
twenty years if I had wished it. I exist no longer for the 
world. I am a dead man. I am occupied in nothing but 
my family and my retreat, mj^ house, my cows, and my 
mules." 2 

» Campbell, pp. 222, 333. 2 Campbell, pp. 222, 229. 


In his remarks about Italy he showed his desire to be on 
good terms with his neighbours. He might some day have to 
rely upon them. Accordingly, he " expressed some regret at 
having taken away so many fine things from Italy. ' I was a 
little unjust in that,' he said, ' but I was thinking only of 
France.'"^ He was thinking only of himself . As Republican 
General, in 1796, he expressly announced that he was leading 
his troops to a land where booty of all kinds could be obtained. 
He sent Italian money, horses, and carriages to the Directors, 
to please them and get the better of Moreau and Pic^hegru 
on the Rhine, who were unable to send anything ; and he 
sent works of art to make his name popular among all 
classes, as an advertisement of his prowess. 

He spoke several times to Campbell about Italy. " In 
the course of his remarks as to the discontent of the Italians, 
he traced the evils which existed in Italy to the influence of 
the clergy, and attributed the discontent which was in- 
creasing daily, among other causes, more particularly to the 
national pride in losing the name of the kingdom. These 
evils were too extensive and radical to be influenced by 
Naples alone, or by Murat. He praised the Italians and 
ridiculed the Germans. He would engage always to beat 
thirty thousand Germans with twenty thousand Italians. 
The former were stupid, slow, and without pride, contented 
with their pipe, cows, and farms ; whereas the latter were 
quick and proud, and had now become military. He had 
quite changed their habits and abolished much of their 
degeneracy. All the young men were attached to the French 
from having served with them in the army, and their minds 
were bent upon the formation of Italy into a kingdom. The 
government of France had only been nominal. That part 
of Italy which had been incorporated with French depart- 
ments was only to have remained so until certain of his 
projects were fully realised, and the people knew this. They 
held their places and felt themselves as one people and one 

* Ebrington, p. 14. 


kingdom, from Piedmont to Naples. After this it was im- 
possible for them to be reconciled to the changes which were 
now being made, through the Austrians, with different 
languages and names, the disgusting measures of the King of 
Sardinia, and those of the Pope and his priestcraft."^ 

The French conquerors had not been hated quite so much 
as the Austrians, but the Italians wished to be free from all 
foreign domination. Napoleon did not propose to establish 
an independent kingdom of Italy. 

The thirty thousand Germans whom he could beat with 
twenty thousand Italians would not have been Prussians, 
for to Major Vivian he said that " the Prussians had fought 
well in 1814." Vivian adds that Napoleon despised the 
Dutch troops, spoke with contempt of the Austrians, and 
said the Spaniards were poor soldiers. To Campbell he 
said that " the Prussians were infinitely the best of all the y 
Allies." To Mr. Vernon he said : " The British troops are 
worth much more than any others : after them I regard 
the Prussians as the best."^ At this time Napoleon had 
never met British troops in battle. 

Speaking of the composite army, consisting mainly of 
Austrians, under Schwartzenberg, in 1814, he said that he 
" knew well the composition of the Allied army as compared 
with his own." Again, " In remarking on his confidence in 
his own troops, particularly his Old Guards, and the in- 
efficiency of the Allies, he referred to me to say candidly if 
it was not so. ' Dites-inoi, Comhell, franchemeni ; ti'cst- 
ce pas vrai ? ' I told him it was ; that when with the Allies, 
I never yet saw a considerable portion of his army, but 
everyone spoke of ' the Emperor and his Guards,' as if there 
was something in them more than human to be dreaded — 
that the inferiority which he conceived of Schwartzenberg's 
army was justly founded. There was no confidence in them- 
selves or in their Allies. Each party thought he did too much, 
and his Allies too little ; and they were half beaten before 
' Campbell, p. 312. - Vernon, p. 26. 


they closed with the French. However, in assenting to his 
character of the Allies, I requested him not to include 
Wellington's army ; and I added that the French officers 
of the army from Spain did us ample justice in this 
respect. "1 

To his English visitors he spoke often, and with much 
flattery of their nation, and he also habitually expressed 
himself in a similar manner to his French followers. He 
despised every nation of the Continent, France included, 
but had a genuine admiration for England, and was confi- 
dent that whenever he chose he could find a refuge in Eng- 
land, with a warm and generous welcome. At Fontainebleau 
and on the journey to Elba he had already expressed himself 
on these lines, and he continued to do so when on the 
island. " He said that in England he would have society, 
and enjoy an opportunity of explaining the circumstances 
of his life, and doing away with many prejudices, such as 
was not possible in the island of Elba. In England he could 
even see and communicate with his partisans better than 
at Elba ; four-fifths of the French people were in his 
favour." 2 

" He asked what would happen to him if he went to 
England ; would he be stoned ? I replied that he would be 
perfectly safe there, as the violent feelings which had been 
excited against him were daily subsiding, now that we 
were no longer at war. He said, smiling, he thought there 
would always be some risk for him from the London 

These remarks leave no room for doubt as to the policy 
Napoleon would have pursued if he had found a refuge in 
England. He would have endeavoured to propitiate English 
opinion by " explaining " his actions, and overcoming the 
prejudice they had produced ; and he would have made 
use of his propinquity to France for carrying on intrigues, 

• Campbell, p. 221. -' ciampbell, p. 329. 

^ Lord Ebrington, p. 15. 


with the design of recovering his position. But he feared 
the London mob, which he supposed would be fiercer and 
wilder even than that of Paris. 

Of the French people, he said to Ussher, who had remarked 
that he thought they had shown great ingratitude towards 
him: '''Oh! c'est un peuple leger." To Campbell he 
said that " their chief failings were pride and the love of 

" Enlarging for some time upon the influence which he 
possessed over the minds of French soldiers in the field, he 
said that under him they performed what no other chief 
could obtain from them. This he ascribed to his manner of 
talking to them on particular occasions. With soldiers it is 
not so much the speech itself as the mode of delivering it. 
Here he raised himself on his toes, looked up to the ceiling, 
and lifting one of his hands to its utmost extent, called out : 
' Deploy ez les aigles! Deploy ez les aigles!^ (Unfurl the 
eagles). He then related to me that when the battle of 
Marengo was almost lost, he redeemed it by calling out to 
the men, who were then in perfect rout. He had then with 
himself only about forty horsemen, but by putting himself 
at the head of the retiring troops, and speaking to them in a 
certain tone and manner, they rallied immediately, crying 
out : ' Allans done, en avant.' It is like music, which 
either speaks to the soul, or, on the contrary, gives out 
sounds without harmony. It strikes me," concluded the 
matter-of-fact Campbell, " there was something wild in his 
air throughout this last visit, and in many of his observa- 
tions, the above among others."^ 

This passage reveals Napoleon's dramatic instinct, his 
pertinacious exaggeration about every event in his career 
(for it was Desaix and Kellermann who regained the battle 
of Marengo when it was lost) ; and the strange emotional 
sentiment which he sometimes exhibited. 

To Major Vivian Napoleon said that " the French soldiers 
^ Campbell, p. 302. 


lacked tenacity, could not bear a check, as Csesar had 

Of Murat Napoleon said to Lord Ebrington that he was 
*' the most brilliant man he had ever seen on the field of 
battle ; that it was a really superb sight to see him lighting 
at the head of the cavalry. He Avas a fine big man who took 
trouble about his appearance, which was sometimes fantastic 
— in short, a magnificent lazzarone." He used the same 
expression to Major Vivian : " Murat was a magnificent 
lazzarone," or, as we might say, a magnificent mountebank. 
Of liis sister Caroline he said she was a pretty woman and 
very refined. Considering the recent treachery of his sister 
and her husband he might have been excused if he had spoken 
more harshly. 

When Lord Ebrington expressed his "surprise at the 
admirable sang-froid with which he bore the change of 
his situation, Napoleon said : ' That is because everybody 
has, I believe, been more surprised than myself at what has 
happened. I have not too good an opinion of men, and I 
have always been prepared for what fortune might bring ; 
besides, I have had very little enjoyment ; my brothers 
were more like kings than I. They have had the enjoyments 
of royalty, while I have had little but its fatigues.' "^ 

One cannot admit that everybody had been more surprised 
than Napoleon at his fall, for there had always been a general 
expectation that it would ultimately occur, and after the 
retreat from Moscow, or at latest the battle of Leipzig, it 
might almost be said that " everybody " foresaw the end, 
except Napoleon himself. It had been noticed of him that 
on returning from a victorious campaign he was gloomy, 
abstracted, ill-humoured ; possibly he was thinking he 
might have derived even greater advantages from his 

^ " Nam ut ad hella suscipienda Gallorum alacer et promptus est animus, 
sic mollis ac mimime resistens ad calamitates perfereudas mens eorum est " 
(Ca;sar, IJook III, sec. 20). Livy has (Book X, chap. 28) : " Primaque praelia 
plnsquain virorum postreraa minus quam feminarum esse." 

2 Lord Ebrington, p. 28. 


triumph, or the relaxation and rest may have tried his 
active and energetic nature. But after a disaster he was D 
always cheerful. The more desperate his situation the 
more satisfied and serene he appeared to be. He may have 
been summoning up to his own support his reserves of 
courage and tenacity ; but it was chiefly of the observant 
world that he was thinking. To what extent he was suffering, 
whether much or little, we can only guess. Whatever his 
feelings, he maintained before the converging eyes of man- 
kind a smiling and proud demeanour. 



IN the autumn of 1814 representatives of the chief 
Powers met in consultation at Vienna to draw up a new 
map of Europe. As was inevitable there were serious 
disagreements ; it was not possible to divide the spoils 
which had been taken from Napoleon, without bitter quarrels. 
Russia wanted Poland ; Prussia wanted Saxony ; France 
and Spain wanted a return of the Spanish Bourbons to Italy. 
Several times it seemed as if the only possible course Avas an 
appeal to the arbitrament of war. Indeed, when the enormous 
issues at stake are considered, the avoidance of war must 
be regarded as a triumph. A few years earlier, or later, peace 
might not have been maintained. At that particular time 
Europe was weary of war, and dreaded the thought of its 
recurrence — and there was always before the disputants the 
figure of the little man on the island of Elba, the God of War, 
who would rejoice to hear the guns firing amongst the former 
Allies, knowing that it could only turn to his own advantage. 
That terrible spectre haunted the meetings at Vienna. It 
was seldom mentioned, save in terms of affected contempt, 
but all knew of its existence, and were spurred on to settle 
their difficulties in one way or another, as best they could, 
from fear of the conqueror of Europe. 

In spite of all difficulties agreements were finally reached. 
In February, 1815, only three points of importance remained. 
These were the future of Napoleon's wife and son ; of 
Napoleon's sister Caroline and his brother-in-law Murat ; 
and of Napoleon himself. 



All these matters had been already settled by solemn 
treaties, but some members of the Congress, Talleyrand in 
particular, regarded a treaty as a temporary dodge and 
nothing more. 

By the Treaty of Fontainebleau the Duchies of Parma, 
Piacenza, and Guastalla were guaranteed to Marie Louise, 
Napoleon's wife, with reversion to the son of the Imperial 
couple, but France wanted these dominions to be restored 
to the legitimate owner, another Marie Louise, of Spain, 
widow of the Prince Louis of Parma. The Austrian Grand 
Duchess appealed to the Czar, and Alexander, who was in a 
special degree responsible for the Treaty of Fontainebleau, 
insisted that its provisions should be respected. His influence 
prevailed, but there was to be no reversion to the son of 

The Naples problem proved more difficult. Nobody had a 
word to say in favour of Murat personally. He owed his 
kingdom to the fact that he had married Napoleon's sister, 
and that was now very far from being a recommendation. 
He had neither the royal blood, which was once again con- 
sidered a necessity for a King, nor had he a character for 
fair and open dealing ; on the contrary, he was the son of an 
innkeeper, and he was a notoriously shifty man, who had 
already been a traitor to his own brother-in-law. The Czar 
said : " He is a canaille who has betrayed us all." 

The continued presence of Murat on the throne of Naples 
was the perpetuation of a Napoleonic usurpation ; and 
Napoleon was so near, at Elba, that he would be able, in 
concert with Murat, to create disturbances in Italy which 
might lead to further troubles throughout Europe. Welling- 
ton wrote to Liverpool : " If he " (Murat) " were gone, 
Bonaparte in Elba would not be an object of great dread." 
But when Talleyrand urged the dethronement of Murat he 
found that Austria placed difficulties in the way. The dis- 
putes about Poland and Saxony made it necessary to consider 
the eventuality of a war between Austria and one or both of 


the northern Powers. Then Austria would be obHgcd to 
withdraw her troops from Northern Italy, and leave that 
country exposed to the well-known ambition of Murat. 
It was essential to remain on good terms with him so long 
as that danger existed. Later, when the great disturbing 
questions had been settled at the Congress, Talleyrand found 
that Metternich was prepared to listen to his demand for the 
expulsion of Murat. There was, however, an obstacle in the 
way. By a Treaty of 8th January, 1814, Austria had given 
Murat a solemn guarantee of his kingdom, and had engaged 
to endeavour to obtain the same guarantee from the other 
Allied Powers. England had agreed to an armistice with 
Murat on the 26th January, and again on the 3rd February, 
1814. Murat, in return, was to desert Napoleon and actively 
engage in war against the French. He did so, and in spite 
of Talleyrand's contempt, Austria showed a disinclination 
to repudiate the compact, without some plausible excuse. 
It was hoped that Murat would make a false step. It was 
ascertained that in 1813-14, while he was negotiating for 
the alliance with Austria and the other Powers, he was at 
the same time attempting to keep in with Napoleon. If 
he could now be discovered plotting with Napoleon the 
excuse for his dethronement would be supplied. 

Murat and Caroline were well aware of their precarious 
position, and most anxious to avoid any appearance of 
collusion with Napoleon. Murat accordingly dismissed the 
former Neapolitan Consul at Portoferraio, to cut off all 
connection with the danger spot. Caroline declined to pay 
any attention to Napoleon's request that she should send him 
a cook, an upholsterer, books, etc. Napoleon then wrote to 
Cardinal Fesch at Rome, asking him to send him a great 
quantity of things, including, " two thousand hundredweight 
of wheat, twenty thousand bushels of oats, two thousand 
ewes, with their complement of rams, twenty milch cows, 
fifty orange trees," etc. The Cardinal, rather at a loss to 
execute such an order, wrote to Murat, and Caroline took 


upon herself to reply to him, in the most explicit terms, on the 
25th Jmie, 1814 : " The present state of affairs forbids us to 
enter into any sort of intercourse Avith the island of Elba. 
The fate of Naples is still in the balance. Everything leads 
us to hope that the matter will be satisfactorily settled, but 
that hope will not be realised unless we proceed with the 
utmost caution. It pains me a great deal to be obliged to 
reply to you in this way, but the King's future and that of my 
children leave me no alternative."^ 

Murat, however, was in his familiar role of double traitor. 
While endeavouring to keep with Austria he did not break 
with Napoleon. The Emperor's name was still powerful in 
Italy, and many Italians were looking towards him as their 
hope against the unbearable Austrians. Already on the 
19th May at Turin a conspiracy had been formed for the 
purpose of making Napoleon King of Italy. A constitution 
for the new kingdom was prepared and forwarded to 
Napoleon. 2 When in January, 1815, the news reached Porto- 
ferraio of the discovery and arrest of some of the conspirators 
at Milan, Napoleon, in conversation with Campbell, laid 
much stress upon his having had nothing to do with the plan. 
He said : " Nothing will be discovered against me. At least 
it will not be found that I am compromised at all." " These 
expressions," adds Campbell, " as well as the whole tenor 
of his conversation upon the subject, bore evident marks of 

Though no evidence was obtained against Napoleon, there 
was a general belief that he and Murat were conspiring 
together. Murat wrote to Napoleon a letter which the 
Emperor, in a communication to Bertrand, described as 
" very tender."* Caroline was too prudent to indulge in 
such effusions, which might easily fall into wrong hands. 

An elaborate system of espionage was in force. The chief 

' Espitalier, "Napoleon and Kin^ Murat," p. 4.57. 
- Livi, " Napoleone all' isola d' Elba," pp. 41, 44, Gl. 
^ Campbell, p. 352. * Correspoudance, No. 21633. 


French agent, Mariotti, was sent by Talleyrand to Leghorn, 
nominally as French Consul. Mariotti was a Corsican, who 
had been one of Elise's chief officials, and had been made by 
Napoleon an ollicer of the Legion of Honour ; but he appears 
to have expected more rapid promotion, and had already 
turned against his compatriot before the Restoration. His 
Corsican spirit of vendetta, and his knowledge of Italian, 
obtained for him the appointment of chief spy in Italy upon 
Napoleon. It is characteristic of the Napoleonic atmosphere 
that, owing to Mariotti's former association with Napoleon's 
family, he was suspected both by the French Minister of 
Police and by Campbell of being in the pay of both sides. 
When Napoleon called him " a Corsican adventurer " 
Campbell noted in his diary : "I suspect that this abuse was 
purposely to deceive us." 

Mariotti had agents reporting to him all along the Tuscan 
coast, and even at Portoferraio itself. Angles, the French 
Minister of Police, also had agents at Portoferraio. General 
Spannochi Piccolomini, the Governor of Leghorn, had all the 
travellers from Elba carefully examined, both at Leghorn and 
all along the coast. ^ At Civita Vecchia there were the ob- 
servers who reported to the Pope. 

All Napoleon's correspondence through the post was 
opened, and much of it confiscated. From France nothing 
was forwarded, even newspapers being withheld. Angles 
gave orders that travellers from Paris to Lyons should be 
rigorously examined for secret correspondence. At Bourges 
Madame Bertrand, who was on her way to Elba, was stopped, 
and her carriage and boxes were ransacked. Twelve letters 
were found, of which one was for Napoleon, and though not 
one of them was of any importance, they were all confiscated.^ 

In theory an independent monarch, Napoleon was in 
reality cut off from free communication through the post, 
and in that respect received the treatment of a prisoner. His 

^ " Rapporti di capitani," by Pietro Vigo. " Rivista Marittima^" June_, 
1902. 2 (j_ Firmia-Didot, '' Royaute ou Empire/' p. 62. 


indignation is shown in the following order to Bertrand : 
*' Write to the Princess Pauline that I have received all the 
letters from Naples ; tell her that I am hurt that I have 
been sent through Stahremberg opened letters, as if I was 
a prisoner and he was my gaoler, that I consider such conduct 
ridiculous and offensive, that in acting in this manner he has 
been wanting in respect to me and to himself. There are not 
lacking opportunities which might be used for writing to me. 
I think you ought not to acknowledge to Stahremberg the 
receipt of these letters. 

" P.S. — They may write to me through Stahremberg, but 
hide the letters ; he might think that if we make use of 
him we do not conceal anything."^ Stahremberg was the 
Austrian Commander at Leghorn and Piombino. 

Napoleon was thus forced to employ secret means for 
communicating private matters. Cardinal Fesch at Rome 
was entrusted with funds, and became the organiser of a band 
of counter-spies in various parts. At Leghorn Napoleon was 
well served by Bartolucci, who was a match for Mariotti, 
and he employed Colonna d'Istria, his mother's chamberlain, 
as a wandering spy in roving missions through Lombardy 
and Tuscany. The Inconstant and his other vessels took 
packets of correspondence ; and the Rio boats on their 
periodic journeys with ore were made use of to deliver and 
receive messages. At Piombino two couriers were in attend- 
ance to receive Napoleon's letter-bag and carry it to Leghorn, 
where Bartolucci opened it and sent the letters on. The 
groom Vincent took a secret packet to Florence, the valet 
Cipriani was sent to Genoa, the gardener Hollard to Leghorn, 
and several emissaries were sent to Vienna. Communication 
with Naples was kept up by means of Madame Mere's maid, 
or the Countess Walewska, or the Milanese Litta, and no 
doubt by other persons whose names have not been recorded. 
In the Post Office at Portoferraio there were intrigues and 
counter-intrigues, some of the officials being suspected of 

^ Correspondance, No. 21629. 


taking money from both sides. Napoleon had all letters of 
any interest copied for his perusal before delivery to the 
recipient. lie managed in these various ways to keep himself 
fairly well supplied with news of what was going on at Vienna 
and elsewhere. He contrived, for instance, to obtain a 
regular supply of French newspapers ; and Lord Holland 
sent him English newspapers from time to time. 

On the 30th October Pauline arrived from Naples in the 
Inconstant, which Napoleon had sent to fetch her, escorted 
by a Neapolitan frigate ; but Murat's ship had orders to go 
no further than the channel of Piombino, and to have no 
communication with Elba, for fear of the suspicions that 
might be aroused. Taillade, however, had taken a packet 
of correspondence from Napoleon to Murat, and Pauline 
was doubtless the medium of messages in return. 

From this time a steady interchange of communications 
between Elba and Naples was reported by the spies, but no 
written matter could be got hold of, until early in 1815 
a box from Cardinal Fesch was opened by the papal agents 
at Civita Vecchia, and found to contain letters for Napoleon 
from Fesch and Murat. There was nothing of a directly 
incriminating nature, but there was proof of friendly and 
secret relations, which could be interpreted as a conspiracy 
between Murat and Napoleon.^ 

This occurred just at the time when Austria was being 
relieved of her anxiety as to her relations with Russia and 
Prussia. At this critical moment, Murat, with his headstrong 
folly, himself applied the light to the powder. On the 8th 
February he wrote to Metternich asking for a formal declara- 
tion of his rights, and remarking that in case of war with 
France he would want to send eighty thousand men through 
the Austrian territories in North Italy. Metternich's reply 
was that such a movement would be regarded by Austria 
as an act of war. 

Austria was now ready to support France and Spain, 

1 Espitalier, p. 403. 
























E < 


but England was unwilling to use force. Castlereagh had 
proposed " an actual offer of terms to Murat," with adequate 
provision. Bathurst suggested Corfu as a residence, with 
£50,000 a year. As late as the 25th February, 1815, Liverpool 
wrote to Castlereagh of the " absolute impracticability of our 
engaging in any military operations for the purpose of driving 
Murat from the throne of Naples." ^ 

But when documentary proof had been obtained of Murat's 
double treachery to Napoleon and to the Allies in 1813-14, 
Liverpool wrote to Wellington that if negotiations had been 
tried and Murat declined " a good provision," and the 
Powers were united in their determination to dethrone him, 
" we might blockade his ports by sea." At the same time 
Liverpool was of opinion, and in this he was supported by 
Wellington, that a French expedition across the sea would 
have serious difficulties to face, and, differing from Welling- 
ton, he thought the best policy was to leave Murat in 

So matters stood when Napoleon left Elba. 

With regard to the future of Napoleon there was 
much discussion at Vienna, but no formal proposals were 
ever made. Talleyrand wrote to Louis XVIII on the 13th 
October : " Questions are often asked in my presence, and 
Lord Castlereagh has spoken to me explicitly on the point, 
whether the Treaty of the 11th April is being carried out. 
The silence of the budget on this matter has been noticed 
by the Emperor of Russia. M. De Metternich says that 
Austria must not be expected to carry out the stipulations 
with regard to the Mont de Milan, * if France does not carry 
out the clauses of the Treaty which lie at her charge. Alto- 
gether this business is constantly cropping up in different 
ways, and nearly always in a disagreeable manner. However 
painful it may be to stoop to matters of this kind, I cannot 

■J Wellington, "Supp. Desp.," Vol. IX, pp. 487, 497, o85, 575. 
- This was the State bank founded by Napoleon at Milan, in which 
members of his family had credits which Austria had engaged to liquidate. 


refrain from observing to Your Majesty that it is desirable 
that something should be done in the matter. A letter from 
M. de Jaucourt,^ who should acquaint me with it by order of 
Your Majesty, would certainly have a good effect. 

" There is evident here a general determination to remove 
Bonaparte from the island of Elba. Nobody has yet any 
fixed idea as to the place to which he could be sent. I have 
proposed one of the Azores. They are five hundred leagues 
distant from the nearest continent. Lord Castlereagh seems 
to think that the Portuguese might be brought to lend them- 
selves to such an arrangement, but in any discussion the 
question of money would reappear."^ 

To this Louis XVIII replied, on the 21st October : " I 
will at once make M. de Jaucourt write the letter that you 
desire, but between ourselves, I would go beyond the stipu- 
lation of the 11th April if the excellent idea of the Azores 
were put into execution." 

Louis XVIII did not send Talleyrand the desired declara- 
tion that the Treaty would be respected. 

Talleyrand put the case too strongly when he said there 
was a general " determination " to remove Napoleon from 
Elba. It was now recognised, as it ought to have been from 
the first, that at Elba the great man was too near to Italy and 
Europe ; but there was a considerable difference of opinion 
as to what should be done. Talleyrand was for using force 
or fraud ; he would have gone to any extreme without scruple. 
Pozzo di Borgo, who had been an Ajaccio friend of Napoleon's 
in his youth, was now fired by the unquenchable spirit of 
Corsican vendetta, which sanctions any crime ; but his 
influence with the Czar was not sufficient to make that 
monarch break his word. Nor were either Prussia or Austria 
eager to repudiate their engagements, at least until Napoleon 
had given them some excuse, by overt action inconsistent 
with the Fontainebleau arrangement. 

* The Marquis de Jaucourt was Minister for Foreign Affairs during the 
absence of Talleyrand. ^ Talleyrand, "Memoires," Vol. II, p. 351. 


The reference to Castlereagh in Talleyrand's letter has led 
some French writers* to assert that while Castlereagh was 
complaining that Louis XVIII did not fulfil his obligations, 
he himself was prepared to break his engagement with 
regard to Elba. There is no comparison between the French 
undertakings, which were of a solemn and important nature, 
entered into for value received from Napoleon, and the post- 
poned and protesting acceptance by England, expressly 
confined to the Elba stipulation. Nor is there any reason to 
suppose that Castlereagh was prepared to assist in a forcible 
deportation of Napoleon. He contemplated a voluntary 
arrangement by money compensation to Portugal for the 
surrender of an island in the Azores, and by ample financial 
provision for Napoleon. The reluctance of the British 
Government to join in hostilities against Murat, a proved 
traitor to England, should have sufficed to exculpate us from 
the charge of preparing to use force against Napoleon. It 
was France, not England, that was repudiating her engage- 

Besides Talleyrand's " excellent idea of the Azores," St. 
Helena was mentioned as a suitable place for Napoleon's 
exile. No official suggestion was ever made, but it was 
recognised, in informal conversations, that the island in the 
South Atlantic would be a very safe prison. Some were 
base enough to speak of Santa Lucia or Trinidad, on the 
express ground of the reputed unhealthiness of those West 
Indian islands. 

When Napoleon learned of the projects that were talked 
about he pretended at first to be unconcerned. To Campbell 
he said, on the 31st October : " I am a dead man. I was born 
a soldier. I mounted the throne and stepped down. I am 
ready for anything. They can deport me. They can have me 
assassinated. I should stretch out my breast to receive the 
dagger. As General Bonaparte I had some possessions which 
I had gained, but they have taken all." But on another 
^ See Houssaye, "1815, la premiere restauration," p. 169. 


occasion, when walking with Bertrand and Drouot, Campbell 
also being present, he said : " I am a soldier. If they wish 
to assassinate me, I will open my breast, but I object to being 
deported." Later, on the 14th January, 1815, Campbell 
reports that in an interview Napoleon " spoke of the state- 
ments which had appeared in some of the newspapers 
respecting his removal to St. Helena or St. Lucia, in a way 
which showed his belief in them, said he would not consent 
to being transported from Elba, but would resist the attempt 
by force to the last. ' Before that, they will have to make a 
breach in my fortifications. We shall see.' I told him I did 
not believe these stories, which had no foundation beyond 
vague report."^ 

He made preparations for defence, placing some of the 
Guards in two detached forts which protected Portoferraio 
on the land side, and making the town forts ready to receive 
the enemy. He gave orders that if more than three warships 
appeared together they were to be fired upon. 

These measures were not without their effect. It became 
evident that Napoleon would be able to meet force by force, 
and that a considerable armed expedition would have to be 
sent against him, which none of them, not even France, had 
any desire to undertake. That reflection, coupled with the 
opposition of the Czar to all repudiation of the Treaty, 
resulted in the question being shelved. France and Spain 
were concerting measures for an expedition against Murat, 
and Talleyrand hoped that Napoleon might be drawn into 
that affair. 

In the meantime, Talleyrand was still being pestered 
about the unpaid money. He reported to Louis XVIII, on 
the 15th February, 1815, a long conversation which had 
taken place between the Czar and himself. " The Czar : 
' Why do you not carry out the Treaty of the 11th April ? ' 
Talleyrand : ' Absent from Paris for the last five months, I 
do not know what has been done with regard to it.' The 

» Campbell, pp. 317, 352. 


Czar : ' The Treaty is not being carried out, we are bound 
to demand its execution ; it is for us an affair of honour ; we 
cannot depart from its stipulations in any wa}^ Tlie Emperor 
of Austria holds as firmly to it as I do, and you may rely 
upon it that it hurts him to know that it is not being carried 
out.' Talleyrand : ' Sire, I will report what you have done 
me the honour to say to me ; but I must remark that in 
the state of unrest which prevails in the districts which are 
near to France and especially in Italy, there may be danger 
in furnishing the means of intrigue to the persons who must 
be supposed to have tendencies in that direction.' . . . Lord 
Castlereagh has also spoken with warmth to me about the 
Treaty of the 11th April, and I have no doubt he will speak 
to Your Majesty about it. ^ This question has been lively now 
for some time, and is now in everybody's mouth. I must tell 
Your Majesty that it reappears frequently and in an un- 
pleasant manner ; its influence is felt in the question of the 
Mont de IMilan, which concerns so many of the subjects 
and servants of Your Majesty."^ 

Talleyrand suggested to Louis XVIII that it might be 
possible in return for certain concessions by France, to induce 
England to make the payments to Napoleon and his family. 
English gold would apparently not have had the effect of 
French gold in " furnishing the means of intrigue." Talley- 
rand made no reference in his letter to the removal of 
Napoleon from Elba. That project was abandoned, at least 
until Murat had been dealt with. 

At St. Helena Napoleon said at one time that the fear of 
being deported conduced to his decision to leave Elba, and at 
another time that it had not influenced him. When he left 
Elba he may have known that he M^as not to be attacked 
by the armed force of any of the Powers until IMurat had 

^ Lord Castlereagh had just left Vienna, where his place was taken by the 
Duke of Wellington, in order to be present at the opening of Parliament ; 
he expected to be received by Louis XVIII in Paris on the way. 

2 Pallain, " Correspondeiice of Talleyrand with Louis X\''III, " Vol. I, 
p. 285. 


been deposed, and probably not even then without pre- 
liminary negotiation. But, whatever may have been his 
information on that point, he undoubtedly did entertain 
a hvely fear of personal violence by abduction or by 

Maiiotti wrote to Talleyrand, on the 2Sth September : 
" Napoleon goes often to Pianosa. I have been assured that 
there being no suitable house on the island, he sleeps on board 
the ship. It would be easy for TaUlade to seize him and take 
him to the island of Sainte Marguerite."* Taillade was at 
that time believed to be disloyal to Napoleon. I>up>ont. 
ICnktex of War, wrote to Talleyrand that Napoleon took such 
precautuMis, and was so much on his guard that it would be 
very difficult to seize him on the island of Elba.* At sea the 
chances were better. When a Franco-Spanish fleet was in 
the nei^ibouihood on the Murat business, there would be a 
stTMig tenqrtation to try to obtain possession of the person 
of Napoleon. 

There were also projects of assassination. Joseph sent to 
his brother the details of a plot that had come to his ears. 
A French officer at Toulon wrote to the Comte d'Artois 
that he was in a position to have Napoleon murdered by 
some of his Elba gendarmes.' Fossombroni, the Minister 
of the Grand Duke Ferdinand at Florence, told Pons that 
there were srhemes against Napoleon's life. Brulart. who 
had openly threatened to kill the Emperor when at the height 
of his power, was now sent as Governor to Corsica. 

Napc^eon was convinced that Brukurt intended to have him 
murdered- He told Campbell that he "was prepared for 
every act of personal hostility and oppression, even to the 
taking of his life. Was it not evident that there was some 
such intention against him in the choice made of the Governor 
of Corsica — ^Brulart — a man who was employed for many 

I ITuMW ij», " 1815, la pRBiieTe itiliiujUum," p. 173. 
* Foarnaer, A., ''Die Geiieim ptdna aof iesn Wieaet CoofreSj'* ppi 
n9, 236l ' HocisaTe, '''1815,= pL 174- 


years by the Bourbons while in England in plots and con- 
spiracies with Georges and others ? Brulart had even changed 
his residence from Ajaccio to Bastia, so as to be at the point 
nearest Elba. Since then he had never gone out to take 
exercise except with four armed soldiers to accompany him. 
Brulart would not have been selected with any other view, 
for he had no connection whatever with Corsica." On the 
15th January, 1815, Napoleon again spoke to Campbell 
about Brulart ; he asserted that an assassin sent by him had 
just been apprehended. " Napoleon appeared much agitated 
and impressed with a belief in the truth of wliat w^as stated." ^ 
The reference was to a Corsican named Ubaldi, who was on 
the staff of Brulart, and had arrived at Portoferraio. The 
affair is obscure,^ but it may be questioned whether Brulart 
was scheming to have Napoleon murdered. At St. Helena 
Napoleon said that " the criminal projects of Brulart were 
a mj^stery to no one," and that he had been obliged to have 
an escort of twelve Lancers whenever he went out.^ Napoleon 
was justified in taking every precaution. There is no reliable 
evidence of any actual attempt upon his life, but there was 
every reason to apprehend an attack at some time. 

The danger was obvious, and was much in men's minds. 
Any stranger, who was not an English tourist, was liable to 
be suspected. A French magistrate who had been dismissed 
from his office by the Emperor arrived at Portoferraio, 
and was set down as an assassin. Rumour said that he in- 
tended to kill Napoleon at the theatre, the Emperor's 
presence having been announced for a certain evening, and a 
large part of the audience that night was armed and prepared 
to defend their Sovereign. The innocent Frenchman duly 
took his seat in his box, and was received with furious looks 
from all sides ; fortunately for him Napoleon after all did 

» Campbell, pp. 328, 3.52. 

- See Fournier, A., "Die Gelieini polizei auf dem A\'ieuer Congress 
p. 418. 

* " L'ile d'Elbe et les Cent Jours," Correspondance, Vol. XXXI, p. 25. 


not appear, or he might liave been severely handled. He 
was one of the few who had no weajjon concealed about 

Another tmie it was a one-eyed Jew, a bookseller at 
Leipzig, who was supposed to have received a large sum of 
money to kill Napoleon with a dagger, while he was examining 
a parcel of books. Napoleon believed the story, and the whole 
island was organised to receive the Jew, while all one-eyed 
men were treated with great rudeness. Even the Mayor of 
Rio Montagne, one of the Emperor's chamberlains, was 
violently abused, merely because he had lost an eye. At 
length it was officially announced, by order of Napoleon, 
that the Jew had been frightened off by the preparations 
made for his reception. But Napoleon continued to apos- 
trophise his supporters to be on their guard. He made an 
appeal to Cambronne to be ready at any moment to defend 
him, and that fiery, rough soldier was so much impressed 
with anxiety as to secret dangers, that he made Portoferraio 
a very unpleasant place for all strangers, except the English 
tourists, who are always so easily recognised. 

The Guard marched every day into the Place d'Armes, 
and there carried out its drill. Visitors to Elba went at the 
appointed hour to watch the manoeuvres of the most famous 
soldiers in the world, covered with medals and decorations 
given them by the greatest Commander ever known, and 
carrying, many of them, marks of the wounds they had 
received in the most wonderful campaigns. Amongst the 
crowd of Elbans and visitors who were admiring these heroes, 
there was one who, for no ascertainable reason, attracted the 
wild eye of Cambronne. He went up to the unlucky stranger 
and, without preliminary enquiry, at once began to abuse 
him roundly, and as the man was too astonished to think of 
any reply he was assailed with threats of violence. Then he 
declared he had been a War Commissary under Bertrand, and 
demanded to be taken to his former chief, who was able to 
substantiate the fact. Bertrand expressed regret at what had 

K S 
H 2 


occurred, but the unlucky visitor thought it advisable to 
leave the island at the first opjjortunity. 

Napoleon could forgive a mistake arising from excessive 
zeal and a too active suspicion. He was heard to say more than 
once, that " the greatest assassins in the world were those 
who wanted to murder a disarmed enemy." He was inspired 
by policy, as well as actual bodily fear, in the publicity he 
gave to this question. He told his followers to speak much 
and insistently upon it. " I intend to make complaints," 
he said, " to let the peoples know how their kings are treating 
me. I have been only too silent." 

The attitude adopted at St. Helena was already assumed 
at Elba, where he was appealing to peoples against their 
kings, and accusing the latter of inhumanitj' towards him. 



NO man in modern times has acquired a reputation 
for transcendent unconquerability like that of 
Napoleon. The feeling was widespread that he 
had the miraculous ability to recover from any 
disaster, however portentous, and that many of the events 
which seemed to be defeats were prearranged for his own 
purpose by the immaculate hero himself, as steps towards a 
still greater triumph over his enemies. A grenadier, on hear- 
ing the report of his death at St. Helena, in 1821, expostu- 
lated : " Dead ? He ? It is evident that you do not know 

This inextinguishable prestige of Napoleon was the great 
dominating force by which Europe had been coAved ever since 
the battle of Marengo. It remained, throughout the Elba 
residence, the standing menace which could not be ignored ; 
it governed every incident of the six years at St. Helena ; 
it brought about the apotheosis of 1840 ; it created the 
Second Empire. 

That the conqueror of Europe had selected Elba as a 
temporary residence, that he would leave it when he chose, 
and on his own conditions, was a common belief, and 
especially among the Elbans themselves. Already, in June, 
there were confident rumours on the island that arrangements 
were being made for an early departure, and that belief 
persisted, and grew in force as time went on.^ 

* Bacheville, p. 31. 

2 " Island Empire/' pp. 194, 202. 



In July Campbell reported that " Napoleon's schemes begin 
to connect themselves openly with the neighbouring con- 
tinent " . . . " all possible means are taken to disseminate the 
idea of Bonaparte's future return to influence and power, 
so that the impression becomes only too general." This was 
only two months after the Emperor's arrival. In France, 
as early as August, there was a report that Napoleon had 
actually left the island. " We guard the cage," a soldier of 
the Guard was said to have written, " but the bird is no longer 
in it." As Angles, Minister of Police, observed in his report 
to Louis XVIII, these rumours revealed a dangerous con- 
dition of public feeling.^ 

Mariotti reported on 28th September, and again on 25th 
November, that preparations for Napoleon's departure were 
being made at Portoferraio. A woman, Madame de Berluc, 
who arrived in Paris from Elba on the 3rd December, 
informed the Minister of Police that Napoleon " hides a design 
to return soon to France, with his army " ; the officers of the 
Emperor's suite told her that she would not be long in 
France before them ; there was an alternative plan, to go to 

To make enquiries as to these reports Hyde de Neuville 
was sent from Paris to Leghorn and Florence ; and Mariotti 
despatched a secret agent to Portoferraio. 

This emissary, whose identity is still obscure, was a young 
Tuscan who had served in the Imperial army. He left 
Leghorn on the 29th November, travelling with a Milanese 
named Litta, who had been in the service of Eugene, and wlio 
expressed the greatest devotion to the Emperor. Arrived at 
Portoferraio on the 30th November, the agent had to show 
his passport and to state his business, which he said was to 
sell oil ; he was then taken with the other arrivals to undergo 
the scrutiny of Cambronnc. Although by this time the 
regulations were strict, most new-comers being sent back at 

^ Campbell, pp. 266, 268. "Royaute ou Empire," p. 106. 
^ " Royautc ou Empire," p. 169. 


once and few allowed to remain more than the prescribed 
limit of three days, the spy was permitted to land and to 
remain unmolested. 

The oil-seller's reports are full of references to Napoleon's 
expected departure ; it is the chief burden of his com- 
munications. Men drank at the restaurants " to the Emperor 
and his future disembarkation," and all said that " things 
would change." A female spy, the bonne amie of one of 
Pauline's suite, reported that the Princess had said one day 
at table that ere long they would all learn of the plan which 
had been concerted between Napoleon and Marie Louise, and 
that there would be a complete change soon. The Emperor 
wanted it to be supposed that Austria was on his side. 

From this agent the oil-seller also learned, on the 1st 
December, that Napoleon had said one day to Drouot : 
" Well, General, what do you think ? Would it be too early 
to leave the island during carnival ? "^ This is the first 
reference by Napoleon to his departure that has come down 
to us. There is other evidence that at this time he was 
meditating a move. Peyrusse says, under date 7th December, 
that Napoleon had received a visit from a mysterious^ 
stranger, who had brought him news of the intention of the 
Allies to have him deported to St. Helena ; that from the 
date of that visit the manner of Napoleon changed, he 
became curt in speech, showed temper, and shortened the 
evening parties ; and orders were given that the brig should 
be prepared for a voyage.- 

Pons also records that from the time that he heard of the 
St. Helena suggestion. Napoleon's demeanour underwent a 
change, that it was apparent he no longer considered himself 
bound by the Treaty of Fontainebleau. Pons had been a 
sailor. The Emperor sent him a confidential letter directing 
him to make a report on the means to be employed for the 
preparation of an "expeditionary flotilla." Pons understood 

1 Pellet, pp. 118, 120 etseq. 
- Peyrusse, pp. 262-3. 


what was meant, and in his report spoke of a disembarkation 
upon a friendly shore, i 

Nothing further was done at the time, but it is evident 
that the St. Helena reports turned Napoleon's mind to the 
preparations of defence which have already been mentioned, 
and also to the more characteristic Napoleonic method, of a 
sudden and unexpected attack upon the enemy. At the 
beginning of December, 1814, Napoleon had resolved to take 
the first opportunity for a return to France. 

Early in December Litta managed to obtain a private 
interview with Napoleon, in the course of which he assured 
the Emperor of the loyalty of Italy towards him, and declared 
that it was hoped he Avould appear there once more " to make 
them a united nation." Coming from Milan, the headquarters 
of Italian discontent, and the scene of Napoleon's coronation, 
Litta, gave very encouraging reports as to the state of public 
feeling. But when Napoleon asked whether the Italian 
troops had returned from Germany he was told that all had 
not yet come back — an important matter in the event of 
an attempt on Italy. 

This conversation was communicated by Litta to the oil- 
seller, and by him to Mariotti, who reported it to Campbell 
when the latter was at Leghorn. The concluding words of the 
interview according to the oil-seller were : " Litta : ' Sire, 
I am going to Naples.' The Emperor : ' Well, before depart- 
ing I shall have the pleasure of seeing you again ' {Avant de 
partir faurai le plaisir de vous revoir). The oil-seller added 
that Napoleon laid stress upon the words avant de partir, and he 
evidently thought the Emperor was referring to his own 
departure. The oil-seller was an Italian, whose French was 
very imperfect. 

Campbell's version is : " Litta : ' I intend to go to Naples,' 
Napoleon : ' Naples ? ' (He looked at M. Litta, and fell 
into a thoughtful mood.) ' I will see you again before your 

1 Pons, "Souvenirs," pp. 372, 374, 377. "Memoire aux Puissances," 
p. 108. 


departure ' " {Je vous verrai encore avant voire dipart).^ This 
has a more probable appearance. Napoleon, after a moment 
of hesitation, concluded that he might entrust Litta with a 
message for Murat, and gave him to understand by the 
emphasis of his tone that he counted upon seeing him again 
before the latter's departure for Naples. 

The oil-seller says Litta left Portoferraio soon after the 
middle of December, having previously been summoned 
by Napoleon to a private interview, in which he was given a 
special mission, and was charged to send news from Naples. ^ 
This confirms Campbell and shows that Napoleon was using 
Litta as a means of communication with Murat. The ten- 
dency to twist Napoleon's words from their proper meaning 
and make him speak of an impending departure, is significant 
of the feeling prevalent at the time. 

Every week or two there was a confident rumour in the 
island that the Congress of Vienna was dissolved, that war 
was about to break out, and that the great soldier would be 
sent for. Napoleon one day said : "I see that we shall have 
to fight again." News had been received that General Koller 
was coming from. Vienna " with the good news of a change of 
the throne." Campbell says that Napoleon was much 
interested in this, he " seemed to view the report with 
feelings of hope and eager curiosity." The oil-seller reported 
that Marie Louise had become enceinte as the result of her 
supposed visit to Elba, and that the inhabitants were excited 
with the thought that " when Napoleon is on the throne he 
will not forget this island." Napoleon had said, on the 2nd 
January, 1815 : " We will pass these days of winter as well 
as we can, and we shall hope to pass the spring as agreeably as 
possible." These ambiguous words had caused a painful 
impression as the troops thought they meant that the 
departure was postponed. Massena was about to " attempt 
a coup in favour of Napoleon." " The opinion is unanimous," 

» Campbell, p. 346. 
2 Pellet, p. 133. 


writes the oil-seller on the 6th January, " that the revolution 
will take place in the month of March."* 

Angles reported in January to Louis XVIII that at Porto- 
ferraio a change was confidently expected. On the 3rd 
February he wrote : " Grain and flour have been collected 
in quantity ; they came on English ships." On the 22nd 
February a Genoese captain of a ship from Elba had said 
that if a soldier asked for leave to go to France Napoleon 
would say : " A little patience, my friend, we will go to- 

There was also a very general belief that England was at 
work in secret for the return to power of Napoleon. The 
Elbans had seen Napoleon arrive in an English ship ; they 
heard the Emperor extol the English character and the 
English nation ; they knew that the British Commissioner 
was the sole representative of a foreign nation on the island, 
and that Napoleon received him frequently ; they had to 
find accommodation for the English tourists who came in 
numbers unusual in those days, merely to gaze with awe and 
rapture at the great man.^ So far had this hero-worship gone 
that Admiral Hallowell remarked to Campbell at Leghorn 
that he " disapproved most strongly of several instances of 
voluntary court and unnecessary visits paid by naval officers 
at Portoferraio," and that he issued orders to stop these 
pilgrimages of the ships of His Majesty King George. 

It was believed that many of the English visitors had mis- 
sions. A certain R. W. Murray went to Elba, where he was 
received by Napoleon, and being supposed to be a natural son 
of an English Prince, his visit was regarded as evidence of an 
understanding between Napoleon and the Royal Family. ^ 

* Pellet, pp. Ui, 135, 137, 144. Houssaye, 'HHlo," p. 147, makes the 
surprising statement that " at Elba nobody seemed to tliink of Napoleon's 
departure." It was the chief topic of conversation on the island. 

- There were only sixty-oue altogether during Napoleon's residence, 
according to the official list. Pellet, p. Kw. 

^ Murray, on his return to England, was, at the instance of Lord 
Castlereagh, sentenced to transportation to Van Diemen's Land, on a charge 
of bigamy. The real offence was believed to be high treason ; but the affair 
is still a mystery. 


Adjutant Pierre Labadie entered in his diary such items 
as the following : " 12th September : An English Countess 
has arrived, people say with despatches for Bertrand. 20th 
September : Four gentlemen have arrived in a canoe, dis- 
guised as sailors. 21st September : There is a rumour that 
Napoleon has received despatches from the English" (the 
disguised gentlemen). " 20tli November : Napoleon has 
received another packet from the English." 

The oil-seller writes in the same strain : " The English 
corvette has brought a considerable sum of money for His 
Majesty, and Colonel Campbell, before leaving, has had 
several interviews with Napoleon. ... I have been assured 
that two Englishmen arrived and at once demanded to see the 
Emperor, who had just gone to San Martino. The English 
followed him and delivered two packets. His Majesty 
returned at once to the Mulini Palace ; next day he received 
the strangers, who re-embarked immediately afterwards." 

When Napoleon was about to embark for France the oil 
seller was told at the office of the French staff that they had 
positive knowledge that the Emperor's departure was 
undertaken in agreement with England, owing to the refusal 
of Louis XVIII to agree to the English demands. ^ Colonel 
Vincent wrote in his diary that Napoleon had said that 
" if ever he left Elba, it would be for England " — a remark 
which one can well believe was actually made, and meant. ^ 

Finally, when Campbell absented himself just at the time 
of Napoleon's departure, it was concluded throughout 
Europe — the fantastic idea still finds support on the 
Continent — that he did so in collusion with the Emperor.^ 

In spite of the reports that reached Paris, the French 
Government declined to believe either that Napoleon would 
leave Elba, or that if he did so he would venture to reappear 

1 Pellet, pp. 153, 157, 161. 

2 " Me'moires de tous," Vol. Ill, p. 198. 

3 " The most chimerical idea that could possihly haunt a troubled imagina- 
tion. This ridiculous opinion has still its defenders. In truth it would 
be more absurd to believe that Louis XVIII also favoured tlie escape of 
Napoleon." (Houssaye, " 1815," p. 200.) 


From a porirait in possession of General Sir H. Grant. 
K.C.B., G.c.v.o. 


on French territory. Even when news arrived ol the actual 
landing on the French coast the Minister of Police mentioned 
it with indifference as an absurd story. 

The British Commissioner was not so confident. He met 
Hyde de Neuville in Florence, and told him that Napoleon 
could at any moment escape, and that he suspected an 
" amicable understanding " between the Emperor and a 
Tunisian corsair which had visited Elba, had gone thence to 
Toulon, and was now again anchored at Porto Longone. " I 
even supposed it possible that a conspiracy might be formed in 
Napoleon's favour at Toulon ; he could be conveyed in that 
ship, and that the first intelligence might be his being in 
possession of that important place and fleet. M. Hyde de 
Neuville took memoranda in writing in my presence of this 
information, and departed the following day in post haste 
to Paris."! 

In common with most observers, Campbell thought that 
if Napoleon left Elba he would make for Italy. In February 
he was writing that he " thought it possible that Napoleon 
was preparing to desert to Murat " ; that Mariotti agreed 
with him ; that they were " always looking with anxiety 
towards Naples on account of its vicinity. ... I think it 
almost certain that Napoleon is prepared to join Murat. "^ 

The English brig Partridge, Captain Adye, which was on 
the Elba station, was ordered to keep a sharp look-out 
for any movement to the Italian coast ; she made frequent 
cruises from Leghorn to Portoferraio and on to Civita 
Vecchia, and back again. Campbell relied much upon the 
Partridge, and did his best to make her surveillance effective. 
He protested with effect against the order that she was never 
to remain longer than twenty-four hours at Elba, " for fear 
of causing jealousy to other Powers " ; and he also managed 
to prevent the Partridge from being sent off the station in 
order to escort Prince Leopold of Sicily from Leghorn to 

' Campbell, p. 323. 2 Campbell, p. 3G3. 


Campbell was suspicious about the rock of Palmajola in 
the Piombino channel, on which there were two guns and a 
howitzer, and some soldiers sent by Napoleon ; and he re- 
garded with anxiety Napoleon's fortification of Pianosa, and 
the rumoured intention of seizing Monte Cristo. Murat's 
squadron, consisting of two ships of the line and several 
smaller vessels, cruised northward as far as Elban waters, 
ostensibly in order to protect Neapolitan trade from the 
corsairs ; and it would have been easy for Napoleon to make 
for Pianosa or Monte Cristo on a pretended tour of inspection, 
and thence to board one of the Neapolitan ships. 

Napoleon was anxious about the French frigates Fleur-de- 
Lys and Melpomene, because they were placed between him 
and France, and he would have to pass over their cruising 
ground. He wrote a long order to Drouot^ with reference to 
the watch that was to be kept all- along the north coast for 
these vessels, and sent the Abeille to Cape S. Andrea on the 
north-west, to cruise from that point and observe the French 
ships. Much of his anxiety was due to fear that the frigates 
had been sent to concert with Brulart plans of abduction or 
assassination. From this time very few strangers were 
admitted into Elba, and the police had instructions to send 
at once to Napoleon full particulars concerning the arrival 
of every ship and every passenger on any part of the coast. 

These fears made an}^ move without the Guard out of the 
question. Napoleon required the personal consideration and 
display which his Guard in attendance would still provide. 
He openly promised his soldiers that they should all travel 
together. He would never have committed the folly of Murat 
in 1815 or of Louis Napoleon in 1840 ; he saw too clearly the 
danger of a single-handed dash, without any show of force. 
The magic of his person would not have availed him, alone 
and unsupported. At St. Helena he expressed his contempt 
for such foolhardy undertakings. Life, respect, and honour 
could not be ensured without a substantial escort. 

* Correspondance, No. 216fi3. 


As for the voyage to France, Napoleon had crossed many 
times in his youth from Corsica, a journey of the same length 
and nature as that from Elba. He had also, in time of war, 
evaded Nelson and the British Navy, who were on the look- 
out for him, sailing safely from Toulon to Egypt, from 
Egypt to Corsica, and from Corsica to France. These 
experiences gave him the confident expectation of a fortunate 

Provided the embarkation of stores and men w^as not 
reported — and this danger would have been the same whether 
Italy or France was the objective — the voyage to France, 
though risky, was not a desperate adventure. Napoleon had 
escaped greater dangers in his career. 

As already observed. Napoleon w^as under no legal obliga- 
tion to remain at Elba. He knew, however, that his de- 
parture from the island would be treated as an assault upon 
the peace of Europe. But he was so unhappy at Elba, 
and his prospects in France were so bright, that he resolved 
to brave the hostility of the Powers. 

His discontents were many and serious. Anxiety about 
money, as we have seen, was not one of the chief. He had 
enough to last several years, though he kept that fact secret, 
and made a great clamour about his poverty ; precisely as 
he did afterwards at St. Helena. It may be questioned, 
indeed, whether he was anxious to become a pensioner of 
Louis XVIII. He was not proud of the Treaty of Fontaine- 
bleau, and of the money stipulations least of any. The non- 
payment of the promised pension was an indication of the 
feeling of Louis XVIII, shared apparently by the Allies, 
towards the Treaty. 

On the 18th December, 1814, the Ministers of the King 
presented a report in which it was proposed to confiscate 
all the property in France of the Bonaparte family, and Louis 
wrote at the foot : " Approuve. Louis."* This was a pre- 
meditated act of belligerency against Napoleon, carried out 

' Masson, "Napoleon et sa famille/' Vol. X, p. 415. 


by Louis XVIII and his Government. It was not a mere 
" postponement " of the obligations of the Treaty of Fon- 
tainebleau, but a deliberate repudiation of that agreement, 
an attack upon Napoleon, and an act of war. He was 
both legally and morally free to accept the challenge and 
to make war on France in return. 

As already observed, it seems probable that Napoleon 
learned that the projects of deportation had been set aside 
for the time. The fear of assassination, however, continued, 
and not without justification. The danger was very real, 
and it was one of the chief causes of the escape from Elba. 

The separation from wife and child counted for much. 
It was another example of the bad faith with which he was 
treated. With the Empress and the King of Rome at his 
side, enjoying the titles which had been solemnly guaranteed 
to them but were shamelessly withheld, the Emperor would 
have obtained the consideration which had been promised, 
and which meant so much to him. It is possible that their 
presence might have deterred him, at least for some time, 
from any desperate adventure. 

He was most anxious to restore his damaged reputation. 
He wanted to show the world that he was still " the man of 
Austerlitz," especially in face of the rumours that he had 
fallen into a state of degeneration bordering upon imbecility. 

He felt very keenly the imputations which were current, 
of a want of courage. It was said that he had deserted his 
army after defeat on several occasions. The inaction at 
Fontainebleau, the abdication, the haggling about Elba 
and the title, the Treaty — which he never liked to look back 
upon — were all ascribed to a craven anxiety as to his person. 
While still at Fontainebleau he had been stung into remon- 
strance at these charges of poltroonery — and he thereupon 
set out on the journey through Provence, when he certainly 
did show the white feather. Reflecting upon all this at St. 
Helena, he said to Montholon : " In any case, my return from 
the island of Elba shows that I am not a nincompoop." On 


another occasion he said : " The fact is, that what instigated 
me to return was the accusation of cowardice ; that in all the 
libels it was said that I feared death, that I had never run 
any personal risk ; at last I could stand it no longer."^ 

Here we have the secret. There was an appearance of 
justification in much that was being said. It was that 
element of truth that hurt him. Wife and child, ample funds, 
and complete security, would not have sufficed to quiet the 
pangs of injured vanit5\ He would rather die than sit tamely 
under these suspicions. The return from Elba was an ex- 
pedition to restore his honour. 

The visible restiveness of all his followers, from the highest 
to the lowest, the universal dislike of the monotonous 
Elban existence, was enough to drive any man to desperate 
action. Even the Guard was discontented, and desertions 
were frequent. It was terrible that even these adorers 
should want to leave him. On the 20th February Peyrusse 
found a volume of Racine on Napoleon's table, with a mark 
against the line where Mithridates exclaims : " Ma funeste 
amitie pese a tous mes amis''' (My baleful friendship weighs 
on all my friends).^ 

The pettiness of Elba, the sham royalty, the lack of respect 
which he sometimes encountered, were very trying to a man 
with his history and his proud nature. The repose and 
inaction of the Elban existence, which some might have found 
restful, were intolerable to Napoleon. His fall was so recent, 
the wound still so sore, that he must have been more miserable 
even than at St. Helena. He gave to Montholon as one of his 
reasons for leaving Elba, that " I was so unhappy, that I was 
not risking much, only my life." Bertrand, as we have seen, 
made to Gourgaud a remark in the same sense. Napoleon 
also said on one occasion that " Elba, where we were so 
unhappy, was a place of delight compared with St. Helena." 

^ Montholon, " Recits," Vol, II, pp. 170, 188. Gourgaud, " Journal," 
Vol. II, p. 302, gives almost the same words. 
^ Peyrusse, llG9. 


But even here, he could not abuse St. Helena without 
recalling the misery of Elba. The statement to Montholon, 
supported as it is by the testimony of Bertrand, is emphatic 
and convincing. Napoleon preferred death to a continu- 
ance of the Elban existence. At St. Helena, as Gourgaud 
says, his reputation Avas higher, he had the extraordinary 
triumph of the march to Paris, to console and gratify his 
self-esteem. 1 

Finally there was the Corsican spirit of vendetta, which 
ends only with death ; and the dominating nature, made for 
action and for command, which had learned to regard the 
first place in Europe as a necessity and a right. Napoleon 
had been too long a Dictator to be able to put up with any 
lower position. It will always be a matter of astonishment 
that so few of his contemporaries understood his character, 
in spite of all that had happened, and required to be taught 
by the Elban escapade. The career of Napoleon, owing to the 
obstinate, invincible spirit of the man, could end only in 
complete triumph or utter defeat. He had to be either the 
foremost monarch in Europe or confined in a secure prison ; 
there was no third alternative. 

jNIatters came to a head soon after the stranding of the 
Inconstant, for upon that vessel depended Napoleon's power 
of reaching France. Towards the end of December the 
Inconstant went to Civita Vecchia. Ramolino, a relative of 
Napoleon, had been acting as one of his secret agents ; a 
packet was delivered to him, and subsequently he came on 
board. On the 4th January the ship sailed for Elba, but was 
driven past the island by a violent storm, and after rounding 
Capo Corso had to take refuge in the bay of San Fiorenzo, 
on the north-west of Corsica. At San Fiorenzo she was 
boarded by Colonel Perrin, sent from Bastia by General 
Brulart, and by Albertini, the Commander of San Fiorenzo. 
Perrin and Taillade had a long conversation alone in the 
cabin, and Taillade in the evening dined with Perrin on shore, 

1 Gourgaud, " Journal/' Vol. II, p. 303. 


when they were again left alone together for a considerable 

Next day the French frigate Uranie appeared, and took 
up a position close to the Inconstant. Her Commander paid 
a visit to Taillade, and was received with marks of distinction. 
He offered to confirm Taillade in the rank of Lieutenant if he 
would leave Napoleon and return to the service of France, an 
offer which was declined, we may suppose with some regret, 
for Taillade had never been a zealous follower of Napoleon. 
The necessary repairs took several days, and in the meantime 
Ramolino, who held an official position at Ajaccio which he 
did not wish to lose, was in hourly dread of being arrested 
and brought before Brulart to explain his secret communica- 
tions with Napoleon. 

The Inconstant began the voyage back to Elba with a fair 
wind, but when she had rounded Capo Corso and turned 
south she encountered another strong gale ; the brig was 
driven with violence into the outer bay of Portoferraio, and 
finally, on the morning of the 12th January, went ashore at 
Bagnajo. Cannon were fired as signals of distress and the 
inhabitants of Portoferraio were soon upon the scene. One 
of the first to arrive was Napoleon, on horseback. He was 
much distressed at the sight, for it seemed that the waves 
beating against the vessel would soon destroy his most useful 
organ of communication and supply, and his only means of 
escape on the high seas. However, the storm abated ; 
Ramolino was safely landed — he fell upon his knees on the 
shore to give thanks for his preservation — and it was found 
possible to lighten the ship by removing her stores and guns. 
Then she was towed into the harbour of Portoferraio, and in 
twenty days,^ that is to say by the 1st February, the precious 
brig was once more in a position to put to sea. 

Napoleon deprived Taillade of his command, and gave 
it to Chautard, a former pilot of the French Navy who called 
himself a Captain ; he had arrived in the island about a 

1 Pous, p. 359. 


month before to offer his services to Napoleon. Under Chau- 
tard, Napoleon placed Taillade as Lieutenant, in spite of the 
latter's poor abilities and very doubtful loyalty.^ There may 
have been no choice. Sarri was too young. 

As an example of the atmosphere of suspicion which 
attended Napoleon, and of the general belief in his habitual 
deceit, the comments of Peyrusse are illuminating. ^ He 
supposes that the stranding of the Inco?istant, with its danger 
to life, and the grave risk of the vessel's complete destruction, 
was planned by Napoleon and carried out under his orders, 
in order that the large quantity of stores required for the 
voyage to France might be placed on board, as if to replace 
what had been taken out ; the fact that an extra supply was 
being taken might thus pass unobserved. When a loyal and 
devoted supporter, a man fully up to the average in intelli- 
gence, writing some years afterwards, can seriously propound 
so extraordinary an idea, we must not be surprised that 
Napoleon's enemies, when employed to scrutinise his be- 
haviour, should have sometimes been too suspicious. By 
friend as well as foe he was supposed to have a secret motive, 
carefully concealed, in all his acts ; he would even contrive 
to make the wind and the sea do his work of deceiving the 

On the 6th February Napoleon again spoke to Pons of 
leaving Elba. He referred to his prospects in Italy. He said 
to Pons : " What do you think of the attachment which 
the Piedmontese and Genoese have shown me ? " and added : 
" If I were to appear in Italy there would be no civil war 
to fear, for Italy is all of the same party, and that party is 
for me."^ It is not probable, however, that Napoleon had 
any real intention of trying his luck in Italy. 

Pons observes, with pride : " Having studied much and 

^ " Some persons say that Napoleon suspects him of a secret understanding 
witli the existing Government of France, and of a wish to destroy the brig.'' 
(Campbell, p. 359.) 

- Peyrusse, p. 278. 

3 Pons, " Meraoire aux Puissances,'' p. 108. 

T. a 


thought much on the point, not the smallest indication has 
been discovered that for the material preparations in con- 
nection with his return to France the Emperor addressed him- 
self to any person except the Administrator of the Mines ; 
an honourable distinction of which it may be permissible to 
boast for all time." This is corroborated by Napoleon's 
statement to Montholon at St. Helena : " Pons alone knows 
the truth ; neither Bertrand nor Drouot were in the secret 
of my return ; I confided only in Pons, because his co- 
operation was indispensable for the preparation of the vessels 
of transport which Avere necessary."^ 

Peyrusse writes : "In the first days of February, His 
Majesty asked me for 500,000 francs (£20,000), and I received 
on the same day the order to go and establish my cashbox 
in the fort de VEtoile. I knew enough to have a presentiment 
of the motive for this displacement. I made, in the greatest 
secrecy, some provision in flour, wine, potatoes, and salt beef, 
and I awaited events." ^ 

On the 11th February Colonna returned from a visit to 
Naples. Napoleon told Montholon at St. Helena that 
Colonna had been charged by Murat with the information 
that the Congress of Vienna was dissolved, and that the Czar 
had departed ; this mistaken assertion had made him leave 
Elba too early, before the members of the Congress had 
dispersed." The statement is corroborated by Gourgaud, 
who makes Napoleon say : "I left the island of Elba too 
soon. I believed the Congress to be dissolved."'* 

The arrival of Colonna, Napoleon said, coincided, un- 
fortunately, with that of Fleury de Chaboulon. This young 
man came to Portoferraio with a message from Maret, due 
de Bassano, Napoleon's zealous supporter. Fleury had been 
a sub-prefect, and had resigned his post at the Restoration, 
out of loyalty to Napoleon. He had arranged to make a 

^ Pons, p. 877. iMontholon, "Rccits," p. 195. 

■^ Peyrusse, p. 268. 

3 Peyrusse, Appendix, p. 1.33. Montholon, "Re'cits," Vol. II, p. 262. 

* Gourgaud, " Journal," Vol. II, p. 323. 


journey to Elba as an act of homage to the Emperor, and 
Maret, hearing of this, took the opportunity to prime him 
with the report he should make of the condition of affairs in 

Fleury, in his memoirs, does not give the date of his 
arrival at Portoferraio. The oil-seller refers to it. Having 
been away at Leghorn for some time, he was back at his post 
on the 16th February. On the 18th he writes : " 18th 
February. — I paid a visit of ceremony upon Madame Colom- 
bani, and having asked for the news of the day, she told me 
that there arrived at Portoferraio from France a few days 
back " {il y a quelques jours) " a distinguished personage, 
disguised as a sailor, brought in a felucca from Lerici. He 
left after having had some secret conferences with the 
Emperor. This visit very visibly pleased Napoleon. The 
police wanted to identify this individual, but they were told 
not to meddle in the matter."* 

From this report and the statement of Fleury in his 
memoirs that he arrived at 6 p.m., and left in forty-eight 
hours, it would appear that, taking the phrase quelques 
jours to indicate more than three days, Fleury must have 
arrived at least four days before the 18th, that is on or before 
the 14th, and must have left on or before the 16th. But if he 
had been still at Portoferraio on the 16th, after the return of 
the oil-seller, the spy would have heard of the presence of the 
mysterious stranger who had excited the attention of the 
police. He must therefore have gone before the 16th, on or 
before the 15th, and have arrived on or before the 13th, 
which would still be quelques jours before the 18th. 

This conclusion is confirmed by Campbell, who, under date 
15th February, writes : " A person calling himself Pietro St. 
Ernest has arrived here under the guise of a sailor from the 
bay of Spezzia. The Commandant de Place, the Commissary 
of Police, and other officials have been with him, and have 
ordered him not to be disturbed." ^ This clearly refers to 

» Pellet, p. 153. ^ Campbell, p. 360. 


Fleury de Chaboulon, the person referred to by the oil-seller. 
Lerici is in the gulf of Spezzia. 

Fleury was told to inform Napoleon, from Maret, of the 
grave unrest in France, the unpopularity of the Bourbon 
Government, the fears of royalist reprisals, the plotting of 
Fouche, Thibeaudeau, Davout, and others, and the expecta- 
tion of either a revolutionary outbreak or an Orleanist 
usurpation ; of the discontent in the armj^ and its continued 
loyalty to its great leader. 

The violet was the Bonapartist symbol, and its coming in 
the spring Avas being talked about. Rings were made of a 
violet colour, with the words upon them : " Elle reparaitra 
au printemps.'' Ladies wore violet-coloured garments, men 
carried watch-chains of that colour. " Aimez-vous la 
violette ? " was a frequent question, to which the correct 
answer was : " Eh, Men.'' 

All this was, we may presume, already known to 
Napoleon. A neat phrase of the day ascribed his departure 
from Elba to " «n peu d'espoir et heaucoup de desespoir." 
But his hopes were not slight ; he had every reason to expect 
that he would be received with enthusiasm, provided only 
that he had not been forestalled by the Orleans faction. The 
message from Maret came just at the time when he had 
already made up his mind to the great adventure, feeling 
confident that the Bourbon Government could not last much 
longer. Maret would not take the responsibility of advising 
Napoleon to return at once to France ; all that Fleury was 
authorised to do was to lay the situation in France before the 
Emperor, who would decide upon his own course. Fleury 
had two long interviews with Napoleon, one on the morning 
after his arrival and one the day after, and he left (as has been 
shown) at latest in the evening of the 15th Februarj^ 1814. 

Napoleon said to Montholon at St. Helena : " Fleury de 
Chaboulon brought me news at Elba of the conspiracy in 
favour of the Due d'Orleans. Davout was particularly 
urgent for my immediate return. He was quite right, for 


the coronation of the Due d' Orleans would have been for 
many persons, and especially for the foreign Powers, a sort of 
compromise between the Revolution and the Restoration." 

Napoleon told Fleury that he did not believe the Powers 
would again unite against him, and that if they did France, 
inspired by the spirit of 179-i, would be able to beat them off. 

On the 16th February, the day after Fleury's departure. 
Napoleon was relieved of the presence of Campbell, who left 
for Leghorn on the Partridge. As soon as the British ship 
was gone he issued orders to Drouot to prepare the Incon- 
stant for a sea voyage. 

The fatal decision was taken. 



THE relations between Campbell and Napoleon had 
for some time been losing their early cordiality. 
In September Campbell concluded from some re- 
marks made to him by Bertrand that it was hoped 
he would spend much of his time on the Continent. To- 
wards the end of October he thought it advisable to tell 
Bertrand that he expected after the conclusion of the Con- 
gress of Vienna to be able to " exhibit the powers of a per- 
manent and ostensible appointment." 

In the meantime it was made evident that his presence 
was no longer desired. Napoleon did not abate his civility, 
but an interview with him was becoming less easy to obtain, 
and Bertrand and Drouot were not now always polite. 
Early in February, when reporting " a want of delicacy and 
politeness towards myself," Campbell writes, " Their chief 
motive, I expect, arose from a wish to disgust me, and 
induce me not to remain in the Island."^ 

Campbell told Bertrand that Napoleon had no right to 
the possession of Pianosa, or of Palmajola, and he asked 
permission to visit Palmajola. He complained that Ricci, 
formerly British Vice-Consul at Longone, was not accepted 
as Consul at Portoferraio, without a commission from the 
British Government. Campbell wanted to employ Ricci 
for the transmission of reports on the occasions of his absence 
from Elba, and for that purpose it was desirable that Ricci's 

^ Campbell, p. 3o7. 


papers should be safe from seizure. Campbell also pointed 
out to Bertrand that Genoese and Neapolitan vessels came 
to Portoferraio carrying British colours, to obtain the 
security of the British Hag, without authority. 

In answer : " General Bertrand expressed his feelings in 
very strong terms ; said that the Emperor and all of them 
were under great obligations for all the facilities afforded by 
me as the British Commissioner, and were very happy at 
my prolonging my stay ; that they wished to show me every 
attention, that I must know all the reports about Palmajola 
were absurd. M. Ricci, he added, could not be considered 
as British Vice-Consul without holding a commission as such. 
There could be no treason or injury to the British Govern- 
ment in a few small vessels arriving there from Genoa or 
Naples, although they might perhaps carry the British flag. 
The Emperor lived quietly in his retreat, and therefore 
considered all this as meddling {tracassant). I told him this 
was a very strong expression ; that to be sure, I was not 
accredited, and therefore had no right to interfere in these 
matters, holding no ostensible situation excepting that of 
Commissioner, prolonged there originally for their advantage 
and at their request. Now, however, it was my duty to 
notify to him, that neither Pianosa nor Palmajola had been 
given over to the possession of Napoleon, and that I should 
report to the British Government what had passed in regard 
to the points now under discussion. Our conversation was 
loud and warm.''^ 

Campbell was not in the right. Pianosa and Palmajola 
were undoubtedly under the jurisdiction of Elba, and it 
was absurd to make comijlaints about them. Ricci could 
not be accepted as consul without a formal commission from 
the British Government. And there was very little harm in 
the carrying, by " small feluccas and other boats," of British 

Napoleon afterwards described Campbell in much the same 

1 Campbell, p. 361. 


terms that he used of Sir Hudson Lowe. He said that of all 
nations England had the greatest number of men remark- 
able for their independence and the generosity of their 
character, but that it had also the most numerous set of 
vile, base, restless, and intriguing agents. Campbell had 
shown that he belonged to the latter class. ^ 

It is interesting to observe that Napoleon described the 
British representative at Elba as a man of low character, 
who had been selected for that reason ; that he denounced 
his tracasseries in the hope of driving him away, and as part 
of his policy of complaint as to his treatment ; that he told 
Bertrand and Drouot to be rude to Campbell, with the same 
object ; that Campbell was suspicious and meddling ; and 
that after all he was not nearly suspicious enough, being 
deceived by Napoleon as to his departure, while at the same 
time he was placed in a position which led the world to 
believe that, under instructions from the British Govern- 
ment, he was the defender of Napoleon from his enemies, 
and an accomplice in his escape. These significant facts 
have an important bearing upon the history of the St. 
Helena captivity. 

Campbell left Portoferraio on the 16th February in no 
friendly mood towards the Emperor and his followers, and 
carrying a despatch to Lord Castlereagh in which he ex- 
pressed his anxiety as to Napoleon's intentions. He showed 
the despatch at Florence to Mr. Cooke, Under-Secretary of 
State, who had just come from Vienna. Cooke laughed at 
Campbell's uneasiness. He said : " When you return to 
Elba you may tell Bonaparte that everything is amicably 
settled at Vienna ; that he has no chance, that the Sovereigns 
will not quarrel. Nobody thinks of him at all. He is quite 
forgotten — as much as if he had never existed. "^ 

* " L'ile fi'Klbe et les Cent Jour?," Correspondance^ Vol. XXXI, p. 28. 

- Lord Hurghersh said that, at his request, Mr. Cooke comphiined to 
C.ampbell of hi^' frequent absence from Portoferraio ("'I'he Corresjtondeuce 
of Lord liurfjfhersh," p. 109). He may liave done so and yet used the words 
attributed to him by Campbell. 


Campbell was relieved to hear this, and he writes : " After 
Mr. Cooke's remarks I began to fancy that my near view of 
Napoleon and of the state of Elba had induced me to exag- 
gerate circumstances." This observation also, with its 
reference to the effect of " a near view," on a small island, 
has an important lesson for the understanding of the St. 
Helena story. 

Campbell's fears were soon justified by the reports that 
now began to reach him. He hurried back from Florence to 
Leghorn, which he reached on the 25th, and his anxiety 
being increased by what he heard there from Mariotti, he 
waited with impatience for the arrival of the Partridge. 

On the ICth February, 1815, Napoleon wrote to Drouot 
that the brig was to be docked, recoppered, careened, and 
made in every way ready for sea. She was to be painted like 
an English brig. She was to be rearmed, and furnished with 
biscuit, rice, vegetables, cheese, brandy, wine, and water, 
for 120 men for three months. The salt meat was to last for 
fifteen days. There should be spars, and, in fact, absolutely 
nothing should be lacking. On the 24th or 25th February 
she was to be in the harbour quite ready. She was to carry 
as many boats as possible. Pons was to be told to hire by 
the month two vessels at Rio, above ninety tons ; one was 
to go to Marina di Giove to fetch wood, the other to Porto 
Longone to bring away stores. ^ 

These orders contained certain subterfuges. The brig 
was to be victualled for 120 men for three months, which 
seemed to indicate a long voyage, perhaps to America. The 
hired ships were apparently required for ordinary work, 
fetching wood for buildings, and continuing the dismantling 
of the fortifications of Porto Longone. To add to the decep- 
tion, Napoleon continued to dictate orders on the affairs of 
the island. On the 17th he wrote to Drouot about the 
budget for 1815, remarking that he would increase the allow- 
ance for the Engineers — rather a suspicious statement, for 

^ Correspondence, 21674, 21675. 


he would have made no increases if he had been determined 
to remain on the island. On the 19th he wrote to Bert rand 
about the funds he intended to employ on certain roads ; 
and in a second letter of the same date said it was his inten- 
tion to go to Marciana towards the middle of June or the 
beginning of July. He continued to issue orders of a similar 
nature up to the 22nd February.^ 

On the 17th Napoleon sent Colonna to Naples to inform 
Murat of his intentions. ^ On the 18th or 19th he told 
Drouot of the impending move. That faithful servant was 
much perturbed, regretted the decision, and did his utmost 
to dissuade the Emperor from the adventure. Bertrand, 
when he heard it, approved. 

On the 20th two berlines which had come from France 
with the Guard, and had been already dismounted and 
packed by Vincent the groom, with the coffee-coloured 
landau and several cases of silver, were carried on board 
the merchant ship Saint Esprit, of 200 tons. This vessel had 
arrived from Genoa, and was promptly commandeered — 
with proper financial compensation. On this day Ricci 
reported to Campbell that the two large feluccas usually 
employed by Pons in taking iron from Rio to the Continent, 
had put into Portoferraio in ballast only. 

On the 21st the oil-seller wrote in his report that it was 
generally expected that Napoleon would leave in March, 
and that evident preparations were being made ; the brig 
was being victualled, the guns laid out on the Linguella, the 
Corsicans were being given uniforms, and each soldier was 
given two pairs of boots. 

On the 22nd the order was given for the horses to be brought 
from Pianosa. The oil-seller himself saw sixty cases of 
cartridges, with other munitions of war, placed on the 
Inconstant, and the Etoile received a number of guns and 

1 Correspondance, Nos. 21670, 21677, 21678. Retristre, Nos. 180, 182, 
183, 184. 

2 " L'ile d'Elbe et les Cent Jours," Correspondauce, Vol. XXXI, p. 34. 
Campbell, p. 305. 


muskets. It was said they were for Naples. Peyrusse was 
ordered to pack all the Imperial cash in strong boxes for a 
voyage. Drouot told Vincent the groom to prepare his 
campaign saddle. 

On the 23rd the Inconstant, Etoile, and Sai7it Esprit were 
visited by Napoleon ; they were steadily being loaded with 
water and provisions. The oil-seller now learned that France 
was the real destination, and he determined to leave in a 
fishing-boat early the next morning with his news. 

In the night of the 23rd to 24th an exciting event occurred. 
About midnight the Partridge anchored in the harbour. It 
was not known with what object Captain Adye had come, 
but the fact that the ship had been brought right into the 
harbour, under the guns of the forts, seemed to indicate 
that there were no suspicions on board, and that the timeli- 
ness of the visit was an accident. If Campbell was returning 
it would be necessary to place him under guard, but Napoleon 
was most unwilling to use force against the British ship or 
the British Commissioner ; he did not want to make war 
upon England at the very outset of his enterprise. While 
awaiting what the morning would bring, he ordered the 
Inconstant to put to sea before daylight, that the condition 
of the brig should not be discovered — a prompt and wise 
decision ; and he directed the soldiers of the Guard to be set 
to work early in gardening and transplanting trees. He had 
given them the piece of ground adjoining the Mulini Palace 
and had encouraged them to work there, partly to employ 
their time and prevent them grumbling, and partly to 
conceal his project of departure. 

At 9 a.m. Captain Adye went on shore. He had an inter- 
view with Bertrand, who told him that Napoleon was in 
good health — though Madame Bertrand told him the Em- 
peror had a bad cold. The Grand Marshal made particular 
enquiries as to his plans and the date of Campbell's return, 
and was told that the Partridge would sail at once to enable 
Adye to visit and examine the rock of Palmajola by daylight, 


and would then return to Leghorn to fetch Campbell back to 
Elba on the 26th. 

It is strange that Captain Adye should have learned 
nothing of the project in hand. He had no reason to expect 
any movement, and observed merely that the soldiers of 
the Guard were hard at work gardening. He learned nothing 
from Mariotti's spy, the oil-seller, because that reporter was 
convinced that Adye was acting in concert with Napoleon, 
under instructions from the British Government to assist 
the Emperor's plans. The oil-seller put off his own departure 
in order to observe the movements of the British ship, and 
when she had sailed and he wanted to follow, he found that 
an embargo had been laid on all shipping, including even 
fishing-boats, and that he could not leave the island. 

The Partridge left Portoferraio at 2 p.m. on the 24th, but 
owing to light and variable airs she did not reach Palma- 
jola before dark, and when Captain Adye was rowed up to 
the rock in the morning of the 25th he was refused a landing, 
as Bertrand had known would be the case. Adye then set 
sail for Leghorn, but there was little breeze and he made 
slow progress. On the way he passed near enough to Porto- 
ferraio to be able to see that the Inconstant had returned 
and was at anchor in the harbour at 6 p.m. of the 25th 

The Partridge arrived in Leghorn roads at noon on the 
next day, Sunday, the 26th February. Adye saw Campbell 
on shore at 2 p.m. and endeavoured to dispel his anxiety 
by the information he brought of perfect quiet at Porto- 
ferraio, but Campbell was not to be reassured. There was 
no mistaking the meaning of the communications to Mariotti 
from the oil-seller, to Campbell himself from Ricci, and to 
General Spannocchi, the Governor of Leghorn, from other 
sources. At 8 p.m. Campbell and Adye were on board the 
Partridge. At the same hour the firing of a cannon at 
Portoferraio was announcing the arrival of the Emperor on 
board the Inconstant, and giving the signal for departure. 


After the Partridge left on the 24th a strict embargo was 
enforced, no departure from the island being permitted. 

On the 25th Napoleon held a reception of the chief digni- 
taries of the island and formally announced his approaching 
departure. The President of the Tribunal in reply said that 
his Elban subjects were torn with conflicting emotions, 
sorrow at the Emperor's leaving them, and joy at his return 
to the path of glory. A reference being made to Italy, 
Napoleon interrupted with the exclamation : " France ! 
France ! " which left no doubt as to his objective. 

The Partridge was then still in the neighbourhood, and 
when Adye at 6 p.m. came near enough to see the Inconstant 
he did not escape observation himself. By the time he had 
sailed away it was too late to embark the soldiers and then 
sail, with any hope of being able to pass beyond Capraia 
and the French cruisers before daylight. Napoleon, who 
remained indoors all day, was occupied in preparing three 
proclamations, which were printed that evening to be ready 
for distribution in France. According to the reminiscences 
of Madame Mere, dictated to her companion Rosa Mellini 
years afterwards at Rome, Napoleon told her on this day of 
the hazard he was about to run. After dinner, at the Mulini 
Palace, he broke up the game of cards in which he was 
engaged and went into the garden outside. His mother 
followed. It was a fine moonlight night. She found him 
walking rapidly up and down by the parapet overlooking 
the sea. She asked what troubled him, and he replied that 
he intended to make an attempt on France, what was 
her opinion ? She replied : "If death must be your 
fate, my son, Providence, which has not desired that it 
should occur in a period of an idleness which is unworthy of 
you, will not wish, I hope, that it should be by poison, but 
sword in hand." 

The next day, Sunday, the 26th, at the customary recep- 
tion. Napoleon announced that the departure would take 
place that evening. At 9 a.m. there was the usual Sunday 


Mass. At 11 a.m. a small boat came in with the news that 
there were no signs at sea of the Partridge or of the French 
cruisers. The soldiers having dispersed as usual after their 
Sunday dinner, special orders had to be sent out to recall 
them ; some of them were not found and were left behind.^ 

At five the embarkation commenced. At seven Napoleon 
embraced his mother and sister, and then drove down from 
the Mulini Palace in Pauline's small carriage with its low 
wheels and two ponies ; they went at a walk in order to 
enable the followers to keep pace on foot. Bertrand, Drouot, 
Peyrusse, Fourreau-Beauregard, Rathery, Marchand, Pons, 
with the Palace domestics, all walked down the hill behind 
the carriage. At the quay Napoleon embarked on the 
Caroline to be taken to the Inconstant. The crowd which 
had assembled gave some faint-hearted cheers for the 
Emperor. With him went the abnormal prosperity Porto- 
ferraio had been enjoying, and many of his suite left their 
debts unpaid. 

The flotilla consisted of seven vessels : the brig-of-war 
Inconstant, which normally carried eighteen guns and now 
had twenty-six ; the merchant brig Saint Esprit, hired for 
the occasion ; the bombard Etoile, six guns ; the feluccas 
Saint Joseph and Caroline ; and the other large feluccas sent 
from Rio. 

On these vessels were embarked altogether about 1150 
persons, composed as follows : — 

Old Guard (grenadiers, chasseurs, sailors, gunners) . 600 

Polish Lancers (with their saddles, but not their horses) 100 

Corsican Battalion ....... 300 

Gendarmes (mostly Italians and Corsicans) . . 50 

Civilians (including servants) ..... 100 


^ Letter of Demons, who was Lieutenant of tlie Guard at Elba, dated 
lOtli September, 1866. (" Nuovi Uocumeuti," p. G.) 


The whole of the Emperor's retinue went on board — all 
the palace officials and domestics, from the highest to the 

The Inconstant carried the Emperor, his Staff, the superior 
court officials and chief domestics, and the grenadiers of 
the Guard. The chasseurs and gunners of the Guard, the 
Poles, four field-guns. Napoleon's carriage, the saddle and 
harness horses and the horses of the Polish Lancers, went on 
the Saint Esprit. The sailors of the Guard and the bulk of 
the civilians and domestics went on the Caroline ; and the 
Corsicans and gendarmes were distributed among the other 
vessels. Each ship carried Napoleon's Elban flag, with the 
red stripe and the three golden bees.^ 

The night was fine and still. Napoleon ordered the oars 
to be used until his ships were clear of the land, and then, 
about midnight, a slight breeze was obtained from the 
south. The brilliant moon was unfortunate, but it enabled 
the lights to be kept burning, for the ships themselves being 
plainly visible, the absence of lights on board would have 
aroused suspicion. 

While Napoleon was making steady though slow progress, 
the Partridge lay becalmed at Leghorn. Adye in his report 
afterwards wrote : " Had there been a breath of wind I 
should have instantly sailed," but he did not think of using 
oars and so getting the advantage of the light air at sea, 
which was helping Napoleon. He remained at anchor until 
4 a.m., when " a light breeze sprang up from the eastward." 
If he had realised the urgency of the moment he would have 
made progress of some sort in one way or another ; and in 
that case it is probable that he would have met the Incon- 
stant. Campbell had decided upon his course of action in 
such an event. While the Partridge lay at anchor he wrote 
to Lord Burghersh in the following terms : "In case of 
Napoleon quitting Elba, and any of his vessels being dis- 
covered with troops on board, I shall request Captain Adye 
* Correspoudaiice, Vol. XXXI, p. 133. 


to intercept, and, in case of their offering the shghtest 
resistance, to destroy them. I am confident that both he 
and I will be justified by our sovereign, our country, and the 
world, in proceeding to any extremity upon our own re- 
sponsibility in a case of so extraordinary a nature. I shall 
feel that in the execution of my duty, and with the military 
means which I can procure, the lives of this restless man 
and his misguided associates and followers are not to be put 
in competition with the fate of thousands and the tran- 
quillity of the world." ^ 

If the wind had blown from the north or north-east with 
some strength, as it often does at that time of the year, 
Napoleon would have been held fast at Portoferraio, or at 
least would have been unable to get out of the range of 
danger, while the Partridge would have reached Elban 
w^aters in a very short time. An encounter would have 
occurred, and the Inconstant, in her crowded condition and 
with her scratch crew, would have been no match for the 
British ship. Napoleon would have been killed or taken 

By 8 a.m. on the 27th the Inconstant was near to the 
island of Capraia, on its south-east. The Partridge was only 
four hours out from Leghorn, and making little progress. 
A French brig, the Zephyr, Captain Andrieux, was approach- 
ing Capraia from the west, having taken a company of 
soldiers to Corsica, on her way from Toulon to Leghorn. 
The French frigate Fleur-de-Lys was near Capraia on the 
north-west, on her ordinary course to watch for vessels 
carrying recruits from Corsica to Elba. The French frigate 
Melpomene was cruising on the same mission south-west of 
Capraia. This vessel cannot have been far from the hi- 
constant and her six attendants. 

Eight hours later, at 4 p.m., the Inconstant had rounded 
Capraia, and was to the north-west of that island. The 
Fleur-de-Lys was not far away. The Partridge was now 

1 Campbell, p. 3G8. 


twelve hours out from Leghorn, and in spite of the feeble 
breeze had arrived near Capraia on the north-east. Both 
these vessels were seen by those on board the InconstanU 
but neither of them reported having seen her. Perhaps she 
eseaped observation owing to her disguise. The Fleur-de-Lys 
may be excused for ignoring the distant vessel, for she had 
no warning of any unusual proceedings, but Campbell and 
Adye should not have allowed a brig, English or not, to pass 
without examination. They had both been deceived by 
Napoleon. Campbell was sure that he had gone to Italy, 
and Adye was equally convinced that the Inconstant was 
still where he had last seen her, at anchor in the harbour of 

The Zephyr meanwhile was sailing in a direction which 
would bring her across the track of the Inconstant, and 
presently the two ships came to close quarters. On board 
the Inconstant preparations for defence were made, but when 
Taillade recognised the Zephyr, a vessel he knew well, com- 
manded by Andrieux, a comrade and friend of his own, it 
was hoped that amicable relations might be established. 
The grenadiers were ordered to hide under the bridge, or 
elsewhere. Andrieux did not at first recognise the disguised 
ship ; he stared at her for some time through his glass. 
Then he hailed and Taillade, after an interval of silence, in 
which he was receiving Napoleon's instructions, replied, 
giving the name of the ship : " The Inconstant. Where are 
you going ? " "To Leghorn," came the answer ; " and you ? " 
Still prompted by Napoleon, Taillade replied : " To Genoa. 
Have you any commissions for me there ? " " No, thank 
you. And how is the great man ? " Napoleon told him to 
shout back : " He is wonderfully well." So they separated. 

The instructions delivered to the commander of the 
Zephyr at Toulon by the Maritime Prefect, from the Minister 
of Marine, had been that he was " to repair to Leghorn and 
establish in those waters a cruise of observation with regard 
to which he will conform to the indications and particular 


napoleon's elban standard 

Fiom an English engiaving of August, 1823 


instructions of General Mariotti, Consul of France in Tus- 
cany."^ He did not know that he was being sent for the 
express purpose of watching and following the Inconstant. 
He was to receive that news at Leghorn. In the meantime, 
he had no instructions as to his behaviour towards the 
Inconstant, and even if his suspicions had been aroused it 
would still have been his duty to proceed to Leghorn. 

It was only after persistent appeals from Mariotti that 
the French Government had at last consented to send him 
the Zephyr, and then she arrived too late. Mariotti wrote 
to Jaucourt : " The brig Zephyr arrived only yesterday 
evening at Leghorn, and her captain came to me this morning 
to inform me he was at my disposal. He told me that he 
had encountered yesterday the brig Inconstant near Capraia. 
If the Zephyr had arrived here forty-eight hours earlier I 
should have given instructions of such a nature that the 
brig Inconstant would not have escaped." To the due 
Dalberg, one of the French plenipotentiaries at Vienna, he 
wrote : "If the Zephyr had been here forty-eight hours 
sooner I should have given such instructions that the In- 
constant would have either been captured or sent to the 
bottom with her cargo." Mariotti agreed with Campbell, 
that if Napoleon were found leading an armed expedition on 
the high seas, his progress should be stopped by force. 

" In the course of the day," writes Campbell, on the 27th, 
" we saw the French brig Zephyr.'' In all probability it was 
the Inconstant they saw. They knew from Mariotti that the 
Zephyr was expected and so concluded that was the ship 
that came in view. 

In the night of the 27th February the wind freshened, 
and by daylight of the 28th the Inconstant was out of the 
danger zone. The Fleur-de-Lys and Melpomene continued 
to cruise over the waters she had passed ; the Zephyr pro- 
ceeded at a holidaj^ pace towards Leghorn ; the Partridge 
at last, on the morning of the 28th, reached Portoferraio. 

* Firmin-Didot, " Royaute ou Empire," p. 264. 


In a despatch sent off from Lcgliorn on the evening of 
the 26th February Campbell explained what he expected to 
find and how he should act. He thought he would discover 
that Napoleon had gone with his Guard to Gaeta or Civita 
Vecchia, or to meet Murat at Pianosa or Monte Cristo. He 
said that the Partridge would not anchor in the harbour of 
Portoferraio for fear of capture ; that he himself would on 
landing demand an interview with Napoleon, and if he 
found that the Emperor was still on the island, and that he 
(Campbell) was not detained, he would return to the ship, 
which would remain outside the harbour to watch proceedings. 
He desired Lord Burghersh to request Captain Thomson, 
R.N., the senior officer at Genoa, to send one of his vessels — 
he had a ship of the line, a frigate, and a brig — to w^atch or 
pursue Napoleon. 

In accordance v/ith this arrangement the Partridge re- 
mained outside the harbour while Campbell went on in the 
ship's boat, it being agreed that if he did not return within 
two hours it should be assumed that he had been detained, 
and Captain Adye should take the Partridge to Piombino 
and send from thence a despatch to Lord Burghersh. 

On landing Campbell noticed at once that the Guard had 
gone, and he was told of the departure of the expedition by 
an English visitor, Mr. Grattan, who had been detained by 
the embargo. From him Campbell learned that the ships 
had been seen a little north of Capraia as late as 2 p.m. of 
the 27th, and he concluded therefore, after much considera- 
tion and hesitation, that Napoleon's goal was to the north. 
Every act of Napoleon's was regarded as probably intended 
to deceive, and the movement to the north was construed 
by Adye — who was singularly unfortunate in all his estimates 
— as intended to conceal a voyage to the south, an interpre- 
tation which aroused misgivings in Campbell's mind. He 
attempted to get at the truth from Madame Bertrand. He 
told her that Napoleon had been overtaken in the Naples 
direction, and would infallibly be captured, but Madame 


Bertrand stood the shock bravely and did not give away 
her secret. 

Pauline made love to him. " She came out and made me 
sit down beside her, drawing her chair gradually still closer, 
as if she waited for me to make some private communication. 
She then protested her ignorance of Napoleon's intended 
departure till the very last moment, and of his present 
destination ; laid hold of my hand and pressed it to her 
heart that I might feel how much she was agitated. How- 
ever, she did not appear to be so, and there was rather a 
smile upon her countenance." 

Campbell did not dally with the siren, but was back on 
the Partridge within the stipulated two hours. At 3 p.m. 
he sent off Mr. Grattan in a fishing-boat to Leghorn, with 
the news which was to call Europe once more to arms. 

It was finally decided, after much discussion, that the 
Partridge should sail for Antibes. Campbell's reasons were 
that " there was always a probability of overtaking Napoleon 
if he had gone in that direction ; there was none if he had 
gone to Naples. The horses and guns, which he was said 
certainly to have embarked, could be of no use at Naples, 
but only an encumbrance ; although to be sure it might 
have been a mask to make me believe that he had gone 
there, and he might afterwards have thrown them over- 

Napoleon's reputation for duplicity was such as to paralyse 
the intelligence of his contemporaries. Campbell, however, 
reflected that he would not have encumbered himself with 
so many Corsicans, who could not be thrown overboard 
when they had served their purpose of misleading people 
as to his intentions, and they would have been of no im- 
portance as an additional force at Naples. " I think," he 
concluded, " his destination is for the frontier of Piedmont, 
next France, and that he will take possession of some strong 
place near Nice, or between that and Turin, dispersing his 
civil followers immediately over North Italy, of which he 


will proclaim the independence, raising the disaffected there, 
while Murat does the same in the south." ^ 

On the 28th the Partridge sailed for the north. On the 
1st March in the early morning, a vessel being seen, the British 
ship was at once turned towards her. Similar prompt 
action during the voyage from Leghorn on the 27th, when 
Campbell had every reason to believe that the Inconstant 
was at sea with Napoleon on board, might have led to the 
discovery of that vessel. On this occasion it so happened 
that the vessel proving to be the Fleur-de-Lys, the encounter 
caused a delay which put an end to the last chance of over- 
taking Napoleon. Captain Garat was much astonished to 
hear of the escape of Napoleon, and declared that the Imperial 
flotilla could not have passed him without being observed. 
He was therefore of opinion that Napoleon was hiding off 
Capraia, or Gorgona. He convinced Campbell, who still 
could not think of France, and now concluded that Napoleon 
would attack Leghorn as soon as he judged the Partridge to 
be out of the way. The French captain having passed some 
precious hours in discussion wdth Campbell, sailed for An- 
tibes ; if he did not find Napoleon he would at least be able 
to send off a message to Paris. When he reached Antibes 
Napoleon had gone, and his own news was stale. And 
Campbell in the Partridge was wasting two days in searching 
around Capraia. 

The Inconstant in the meantime had been in sight of a 
French vessel of 74, which, however, paid no attention to 
the brig. In order not to arrive at the indicated rendezvous 
off Golfe Jouan before the slower vessels of the flotilla, the 
Inconstant was making a course towards Genoa, and on the 
morning of the 28th land was seen, off Noli, near Savona. 
On perceiving the coast, with the Alps in the background. 
Napoleon conferred the order of the Legion of Honour upon 
Chautard and Taillade, and he announced that he would 
give the decoration to all officers and men who had followed 

1 Campbell, pp. 376, 378. 

'" -if ^^^^"iiS>'iir?'iff-"iT»i;T 



him to Elba and had seen four years of service in the Guard ; 
a red flag was cut into strips and the pieces given on the 
spot to these favoured men, but there were not many of 
them, for nearly all those who came under the description 
had already been decorated. Napoleon was in great good 
humour. " It is an Austerlitz day," he said. Peyrusse was 
lying on the deck, prostrate from sea-sickness. Napoleon 
said to him : " The Seine water will cure you, Mr. Treasurer ; 
we shall be in Paris on the birthday of the King of Rome." 
(The 20th March was indeed the date.) 

To Mallet Napoleon spoke as follows : " No historic 
example induces me to undertake this bold enterprise, but I 
have counted on the astonishment of the population, the 
condition of public feeling, the resentment against the Allies, 
the affection of my soldiers, in fine all the Napoleonic ele- 
ments which are still in germ in our beautiful France. I 
count upon the stupefaction which such a great novelty will 
produce, and upon the irreflection and the sudden enthusiasm 
which so audacious and unexpected an enterprise will create. 
A thousand ideas and projects are formed ; resistance is 
nowhere decided. I shall arrive before any plan has been 
organised against me." Then pointing to Drouot, who 
was standing apart in an attitude of dejection, he continued : 
" I know that if I had listened to the sage I should not have 
started, but there were even greater dangers at Portoferraio."^ 

The instinct for situation (like a jockey's perception of 
pace) was one of Napoleon's most valuable gifts. He saw 
with wonderful prescience the kind of reception he would 
be accorded — at first. He would be at the Tuileries on the 
20th March, a remarkable prophecy. But Drouot, the sage, 
though over-anxious as to the immediate danger, prov^ed 
right in the end. 

In spite of the Emperor's confidence some murmurs of 
doubt were raised ; upon hearing them he said : "A revolu- 
tion has broken out at Paris, and a Provisional Government 

1 Peyrusse, pp. 277-8. 


has been established. I can count upon the whole army. 
I have received addresses of welcome from many regiments." 
To this falsehood he added : "I shall arrive in Paris without 
firing a shot," which proved to be the case. 

Napoleon then ordered the proclamations he had caused 
to be printed at Portoferraio to be read out to the soldiers, 
and as one of them purported to be addressed by them to 
their Emperor, the leaders and best writers were set to work 
to copy it in their own hands and to add their signatures. 
In the course of the day the other vessels succeeded in 
joining the Inconstant, and at dawn of the 1st March, 1815, 
the flotilla was off the cape of Antibes. Napoleon appeared 
on the bridge wearing the tricolour, and the soldiers there- 
upon abandoned the Elban for the French national colours, 
which were hoisted on the ships. At 1 p.m. the vessels were 
at anchor in the Golfe Jouan, and the disembarkation in 
boats commenced. 

According to local tradition Napoleon stepped on to the 
soil of France close to a fine olive tree, which he considered 
a good omen. A commemorative column was erected in May, 
1815, to mark the spot, and it still exists. 

A singular good fortune had favoured Napoleon. He had 
been within sight of two French frigates whose duty it was 
to report his doings ; he saw, and must have been seen by, 
an English brig which was charged with the knowledge of 
his intended departure, and which should not have allowed 
any doubtful sail to pass without examination ; and he 
actually spoke a French brig which had been expressly sent 
to watch and follow his movements, though her commander 
had not then received his instructions. 

With regard to the failure of the British Government to 
prevent the escape of Napoleon, Lord Castlereagh said in 
the House of Commons on the 7th April that the Allies had 
never intended to blockade the island of Elba ; and that if 
they had, the best authorities considered that it would have 
been impossible even for the whole British Navy to draw a 


line round the island that Napoleon would have had no 
chance of eluding. Before Napoleon had embarked on his 
great adventure the French Minister of Police had already 
reported to Louis XVIII to much the same effect, that no 
cruising could prevent a landing in Tuscany by night. In a 
literal sense perhaps this was true. Alone, or with only a 
companion or two, Napoleon might have got clear in spite 
of the closest watch, but, practically speaking, it would not 
have required many ships to prevent his making the attempt. 
The risk of capture would have been too great. Elba was, 
in June of the same year, most effectually blockaded by a 
small English squadron. 

Napoleon might, no doubt, have escaped in a balloon ; 
he might have floated away in a barrel ; and he might have 
contrived to be thrown into the sea in a sack, pretending 
that he was a corpse. The famous Monte Cristo story 
should be taken as a Napoleonic allegory, evolved in the mind 
of Dumas by his visit to Elba, and his fervent admiration 
for the great Emperor. " I am a dead man," Napoleon kept 
saying, until all believed it ; and it was as a corpse thrown 
into the sea, and emerging alive, that he succeeded in reaching 
the land, to startle the world. 



Had prudence marked his reign — had Justice thrown 
Her hallow'd symbols round about his Throne, 
Had he on Freedom's side as bravely stood, 
As when \\e fought for Tyranny in blood — 
The world had wept at such a monarch's fall 
And sorrow mark'd the features of us all. 
Poem "The Exile of F^lba." 

Dedicated by John Gwilliam to Lord Byrou. 

WITHIN one week of the day upon which the Czar 
Alexander propounded to the negotiating French 
Marshals his plan for the creation of that Elban 
empire which he fondly hoped would prevent 
Napoleon from having any further active concern in European 
affairs, while, in a measure, preserving his own amour propre, 
the largest of the five small islands lying in the narrow channel 
between the cliffs of Corsica and the coast of Tuscany sud- 
denly became an object of universal and predominant interest 
throughout Europe. Elba was not altogether unknown to 
British statesmen, for just twelve years previously the 
evacuation of Portoferraio, its capital, by the English garrison 
stationed there, had been stipulated for in Article XI of the de- 
lusive Treaty of Amiens. Some little time before the abdication 
of Napoleon Elba had been visited and explored by that cele- 
brated antiquarian Sir Richard Colt Hoare, an account of 
whose tour, illustrated by eight engravings by J. Powell after 
drawings by John Smith, from sketches made on the spot by 
the traveller himself, was conjointly published by John 


From a contemporary print 


JNIiirray, W. Clarke, and John Smith in the spring of 1814. 
This must have been done with business-hke expedition, for 
in a brief explanatory preface John Smith writes : "I most 
gladly accept the offer so kindly made me by Sir Richard 
Colt Hoare, of the use of his m.anuscript journal through the 
Island of Elba, and of his portfolio of drawings ; and I hope 
that the work which I now submit to the public, will meet 
with their approbation. The extended and varied scenes 
of Napoleon's triumphs are in general well known, but those 
of his destined retirement have been hitherto unfrequented and 
imperfectly noticed. To illustrate the latter by views and 
descriptions, is the object of my present publication ; and I 
flatter myself that Sovereigns as well as individuals, will feel 
some trifling gratification in becoming better acquainted 
with an island that is allotted for the future residence of the 
exiled Emperor, Napoleon Bonaparte." To this account of 
Elba, published in quarto form, the publishers added a fairly 
good map. 

The Hoare-Smith book, however, was not the only con- 
tribution to the topography of Elba which appeared in 
London in the early part of 1814. Napoleon was still on his 
road to the coast when Mr. John Fairburn, of 2 Broadway, 
Ludgate Hill, produced a large broadsheet, measuring 
2S| inches by 18|, the upper portion of which was occupied 
by two maps of Elba and two views of Portoferraio, the one 
from the sea and the other from within the Bay, which was 
evidently prepared in hot haste to meet the popular demand 
for information, as it is entitled : — 

" The Island of Elba to which Napolean [sic] Buonaparte, 
the late Emperor of the French is banished, with two accurate 
views of Porto Ferrajo and a General Map." 

A fairly full historical and geographical account of Elba 
concludes with a paragraph to the effect that 

" Buonaparte left Fontainebleau, for the island of Elba, 
on the morning of April 21, 1814. At the moment of his 


departure, he spoke to the officers and subalterns of the 
old guard, who were near him, embraced their general, 
making a farewell speech to them, at the conclusion of which 
he desired the eagle might be brought to him ; he embraced 
it lightly, saying, ' Ah ! dear eagle, may the kisses that I give 
you go down to posterity,' and added, ' Adieu, my children — 
adieu, my brave fellows,' then stepped into his carriage and 
departed under the escort provided to conduct him." 

The various aquatints representing the entry of the Allies 
into Paris on 31st March, 1814, can scarcely be described as 
connected with the iconography of Elba, and the same thing 
may be said of the numerous engravings of various descrip- 
tions and origins in which the scenes which occurred at 
Fontainebleau three weeks later are portrayed. Within 
the next few months the English market was well supplied 
with views of Napoleon's " Island Empire." The large and 
beautiful aquatint described as a " General View of the Isle 
of Elba, Porto Ferrajo, the Town and Castle, now the retreat 
of N. Bonaparte," was engraved by M. Dubourg from a 
drawing made by A. S. Tereni, and it was published on 
1st June, 1814, by Edward Orme, of Bond Street. Some two 
months earlier a second and somewhat smaller aquatint, 
by F. Jukes from a drawing by Captain James Weir, had been 
published by the engraver. It is inscribed : "To the Right 
Honourable Earl Spencer, this view of the west side of Porto 
Ferrajo Bay, with the position of the Captain, 74, Flora, 
Inconstant and Southampton Frigates is with great respect 
dedicated by his Lordship's obedient servant, James Weir." 
There is a third aquatint of Portoferraio with a map and 
portrait of Napoleon in Bowyer's " Illustrated Record," a 
handsome folio first published early in 1815. In this case 
the name neither of the artist nor aquatinter is given. It is 
needless to say that several views of supposed occurrences 
in Elba between May, 1814, and February, 1815, are purely 
imaginary, and cannot be taken seriously. 


When we consider that the stay of Napoleon in Elba was 
limited, roughly speaking, to ten months, it is surprising to find 
how many portraits of him are ascribed to this period. One of 
the most interesting of these is the anonymous French engrav- 
ing in the fine Napoleonic collection of Mr. Alfred Brewis, of 
Newcastle, which forms the frontispiece of this volume. 
When the late Sir Henry Drummond Wolff published his 
book "The Island Empire" in 1855, he reproduced in 
colour a half-length portrait of Napoleon from a picture 
taken during his residence at Elba, in the possession of Signor 
Foresi, of Portoferraio. It has been impossible to trace the 
present whereabouts of the original from which this litho- 
graph was executed by Messrs. Hanhart. M. Godefroy 
Mayer, a recognised expert in Napoleonic iconography, classes 
as possible portraits of the Elba period two full-length figures, 
with different backgrounds, turned towards the left, with 
the head to the right, sketched and etched by J. Duplessis 
Bertaux, completed au lavis by Levachez, and published by 
Bance, 214 Rue Saints Peres. They bear inscriptions in 
English, French, and German antagonistic to the Emperor. 
These portraits, measuring 20 by 14i^e inches, were probably en- 
graved early in 1814, and published in April or May of that j'ear. 
There is a small portrait of Napoleon in colour, " from a sketch 
taken by an officer in the island of Elba," which it is curious 
to contrast with similar productions executed by Denzil 
Ibbetson, Basil Jackson, and Captains A. D. Dodgin and David 
Erskine, three or four years later at St. Helena. M. Godefroy 
Mayer indicates two other Napoleonic portraits of 1815, but 
they were published later, indeed the whole-length in colours 
on horseback, turned to the left, by Levachez after C. Vernet, 
and sold by Palmer, of London, is entitled Napoleon en 
Retour de Vile d'Elbe. The large folio portrait in uniform, 
engraved and published in London, " after the celebrated 
picture by Robert Lefevre, which is exhibited in Adam Street, 
Adelphi," was painted during the Hundred Days, although 
the engraving was only completed after Waterloo. It gives, 


however, an excellent idea of the appearance of Napoleon in 
1814-15. The lettering, " Robert Lefevre pinxit — Zecavel 
sculpsit," is a little puzzling, but the latter name is intended 
to veil the identity of Levachez. 

It is probable that the large lithograph by Pin9on after II. 
Vernet, printed in Paris by Auguste Bry, 149 Rue du Bac, and 
published by Lemaitre, known as Le Grenadier de Vile d'EIbe, 
and bearing the words : "A tous les cceurs bien nes, que 
la Patrie est chere," was the outcome of the Napoleonic 
revival of the Hundred Days. It was at the same time 
that Villain produced the lithographic portrait after Cardel 
of General Baron Jesmanowski, the commander of the 
Polish detachment at Elba. The Poles who were so merci- 
lessly ridiculed in May, 1814, became popular heroes in the 
same month of the following year. 

In the Warren Crane sale, which took place at New York 
in November, 1913, an unsigned 4to mezzotint of Napoleon 
was attributed to the Elba period, and two small colour 
prints of little importance were similarly described. Amongst 
the Napoleonic rariora accumulated by Mr. William J. Latta, 
of Philadelphia, dispersed at the same time by the Metro- 
politan Art Association of New York, was a gold snuff-box 
embellished with a portrait of the Emperor by Isabey, said 
to have been painted by Isabey at Elba, and signed "J. I., 
1815." There was also sold a small full-length sketch of 
Napoleon in water-colours signed *' Coquetti, Porto-Ferrajo, 
Septre., 1814." 

It is not surprising that the serious portraiture of Elba 
is less abundant and much inferior in interest to the 
pictorial satire which flowed so freely in every country 
of Europe between the great crisis of March-April, 
1814, and the brief triumph of February— June, 1815. 
The fateful year 1814 opened with the most famous as well 
as the most popular of the three or four thousand caricatures 
directed against Napoleon, J. M. Voltz's gruesome corpse- 
head, which he facetiously called " The Triumph of the 

- < 

X -^ .' 
^ < " 
^ r, f^ 


Year 1813, a New Year's Present to the German Nation." 
Copies of this clever but forbidding adaptation of H. A. 
Dahhng's famihar " parade portrait " of 1806, made their 
appearance in ahnost every country of Europe during the last 
days of 1813 or the first months of the f ollowmg year, which 
was so soon to witness the entry of the Allied Sovereigns into 
the French capital. The genesis of this remarkable print has 
been thus explained^ : — 

" Voltz's effort may be regarded as the artistic first-fruits 
of the crushing defeat of Napoleon at Leipzig on October 19, 
1813. Up to this time the Berlin patriots had been compelled 
from prudential motives to import their stock of satirical 
prints from London, but it was now the turn of Germany 
to pay the debt she owed to Gillray, Rowlandson, and 
Cruikshank. It was not, however, till long years after that 
the authorship of the grim print entitled ' True Picture of 
the Conqueror. Triumph of the Year 1813. To the Germans 
for the New Year, was known.' In the early spring of 1814 
it was freely reproduced in England, as well as in Russia, 
Italy, Holland, Spain — and even in Paris. Voltz's ' New 
Year's Gift ' to his compatriots was not only calculated to 
assist the serious efforts of men like Fichte and Von Ense, 
but to stimulate the general uprising of the European 
nations against the Tyrant." 

In March, 1814, Napoleon Bonaparte was certainly the 
most detested man in the whole world. The Berlin and Milan 
Decrees, with which he had vainly hoped to crush England, 
the " Spanish ulcer," the horrors of the Russian tragedy of 
1812, the constant conscriptions which had drained France 
of her best blood, and the general uprising of Europe 
which culminated in the surrender of Paris, all combined 
to bring about that state of popular indignation which 

1 "Napoleon in Caricature," 1705-1821, by A. M. Broadley, 2 vols. 
John Laue, Bodley Head, London, and John Lane Company, Nsw York, 


can alone account for the deluge of cosmopolitan invective 
and pictorial satire of which Napoleon at Fontainebleau 
could not have been altogether ignorant, and which must 
have deeply affected the man who had realised, ever since 
the days of Brumaire, the power of the broadsheet and the 
possibilities of happily conceived caricature. It was too late 
now to invoke the complacent aid of the clever draughtsmen 
who had ridiculed Pitt in his last agony, George III in his 
mental affliction, and a corpulent and bibulous John Bull 
bribing the monarchs of Europe with sacks of glittering 
guineas. Like other worshippers of the rising sun they had 
all gone over to the other side, and before the political 
destinies of France were actually decided on, had depicted 
the Fatherland (so long and so cruelly harassed by their 
former paymaster. Napoleon) as a fair woman, clad in a 
flowing blue robe, abundantly sprinkled with fleurs-de-lys, 
who, lily in hand, paid homage to the bust of the obese 
Louis-the-Much-Desired, while she trampled under foot 
a medallion of the hated Corsican, lying on the broken 
Imperial sceptre, and the abandoned Imperial mantle. In 
the background the Imperial bees are seen escaping from an 
overturned hive, while below are inscribed the lines : — 

L'Abeille etait frelon mechant, 
Qui fleurs de lys allait rongeant, 
Mais en nous donnant un Louis 
La France fera des merveilles 
Car c'est en reprenant les lys 
Qu'elle en chassera les abeilles. 

The darkness of insanity had fallen on James Gillray, who 
had shown no mercy to " Little Boney " ever since the far- 
off days of 1797. Isaac Cruikshank and G. M. Woodward were 
both dead, but " Glorious George," as the younger son of Isaac 
Cruikshank had come to be called, was now at the zenith 
of his fame, and the hand of Thomas Rowlandson had lost 
none of its cunning. They had now powerful allies and fellow- 


workers throughout Germany, and the Paris artists were as 
ready to serve the Bourbons as they had been to help 
Bonaparte, who, between March and May, 1814, at any rate, 
had no friends. The fallen Emperor was still on his road to 
the coast when all Berlin was roaring with laughter over a 
caricature entitled " The Step-ladder of Napoleon's Rise and 
Fall," only a whit less successful than Johann Michael 
Voltz's " Corpse-head." Each step has a typical figure of 
Napoleon at the various stages of his career, while below the 
central arch he is seen seated on an island surrounded by sea. 
Through a microscope he surveys a minute fragment of a 
map, handed to him by Time and marked " Elba." In 
despair he exclaims : " Alas, how small is my Empire."^ 

In April, 1814, the English pamphleteers and caricaturists 
discovered that the word Elba, transformed into Hell-bay, 
Hell-bar, and so forth, lent itself to the coarse invective then 
in vogue, while the scanty dimensions of the Czar-created 
Empire could be ridiculed by such a deplorable pun as 
speaking of a want of " Elba (elbow) room." The chief 
ingredients in most of these Elba caricatures consist of the 
Devil, a cage, and a gibbet. Napoleon was still at Fontaine - 
bleau when the windows of the print-shops in St. James's 
Street, Piccadilly, the Strand, and Cheapside, were filled with 
such coarse wares as " A Grand Manoeuvre, or the Rogue's 
March to the Island of Elba " (April 13, 1814), " Bloody 
Boney the Carcass Butcher left off trade and retiring to 
Scarecrow Island" (April 12), "The Rogue's March," with 
the verse : — 

From fickle fortune's gamesome lap 

What various titles flow : 

The Emperor of Conjurors — Nap, 

The King of Beggars — Joe (April 13) — 

^ A full account of the English Napoleonic Caricatures relatinij to the 
period April 1814- February IfJlo will be found in "Napoleon in Caricature" 
(John Lane, 1911), Vol. 'l, chapter xvi. pp. 353-7. A tabulated list of 
items is piveu in \"ol. II, Appendi.x A. For the French and German satirical 
prints on the same subject see respectively Vol. II, pp. 52 to 56, and Vol. II, 
pp. 122 to 131. 


" The Affectionate Farewell, or Kick for Kick, or the Boney 
Family exalted on gibbets in the Isle of Elba " (April 17), and 
" A Delicate Finish for a Corsican Usurper " (April 20). The 
author of this print is overflowing with joy at the downfall 
of Napoleon, and places beneath his highly suggestive sketch 
the lines : — ■ 

Boney canker of our Joys, now thy tyrant reign is o'er^ 
Fill the merry Bowl, my Boys, join in Bacchanalian roar. 
Seize the Villain, plunge him in ; see the hated miscreant dies. 
Mirth and all thy train come in ; Banish sorrow, tears and sighs. 

On the eve of Napoleon's painful journey south there 
appeared both in England and Germany a fairly good view 
of Portoferraio, below which is a medallion-portrait of 
Bonaparte suspended by fetters. The play on the word 
" Ferraio " is obvious. 

The different incidents of Napoleon's tedious and even 
perilous progress towards the coast are mercilessly ridiculed, 
but the German Napoleon^s Reiseabcntheuer may be taken 
almost as a serious picture, and lacks the merciless cruelty 
shown in the French print Saute pour le Roi, in which a 
peasant is seen whipping the Emperor (dressed up as a goat) 
from Fontainebleau to Elba. Louis XVIII reached Paris on 
May 3rd, the day before Napoleon disembarked at Porto- 
ferraio, but the print-sellers apparently did not wait for the 
latter event to publish the caricature UArrivee de Napoleon 
dans Vile d'Elhe, with an inscription in French, German, 
and Italian. 

It is clear that both the English and Continental purveyors 
of pictorial satire considered that Napoleon in Elba was 
effectually caged. George Cruikshank had already portrayed 
him thus while travelling from Fontainebleau — the cage 
being drawn by a ferocious Cossack. On the very day he 
started for Elba (21st April), " Mistress " Humphrey in 
St. James's Street had scored a signal success with that 
great artist's " Broken Gingerbread," in which (anticipating 

y 1 


fs/:.! y /) r) y /:/,/■<. / 



■ dbr' 

//;v/./'y^Z //rj'.'- 



OF 1814 ON napoleon's EXILE TO ELBA 


coming events by fully a fortnight) Bonaparte is represented 
as standing before the hut of " Tiddy-Doll," the renowned 
London cake-seller, holding a tray covered with gingerbread 
figures on his head, and crying : " Buy my images ! Here's 
my nice little gingerbread Emperors and Kings. Retail and 
for Exportation." The cage and Cossack caricature of 
23rd April is inscribed : " The Hell- (El) baronian Emperor 
going to take possession of his new Territory." One of the 
most popular of all these " Cage " pictures was a broadside 
parodying an advertisement of the proprietor of the then 
popular menagerie at Exeter Change in the Strand. At the 
top is an engraving of Bonaparte as a monkey chained by his 
keeper to a post, with a den or cage in the background. It 
was designed by one Lee. The printed text is as follows : — 

" Cruce Dignus 

The Grand Menagerie 

with an exact representation of 


The Little Corsican Monkey, 
as he may probably appear at the Island of Elba. 

Ladies and Gemmen ! 

This surprising Animal was taken by John Bull and 
his Allies. He possesses the cunning of the Fox, the 
Rapacity of the Wolf, the blood thirsty Nater of the Hyena, 
the tender Feelings of the Crocodile, and the Obstinacy of the 
Ass. He has rambled over several parts of the world, where 
he played a number of wicked and ridiculous Tricks, 
particularly in Egypt, Russia, etc., there he had like to have 
been nabbed, but contrived to steal away to France, where, 
after a Time, exerting all the bad Qualities he possesses, 
he so far got the better of his own species as to reign King 
Paramount over Thirty Millions of deceived Subjects. 
' Come, come, Nappo, don't look so Melancholy, you shall 


have your Gruel with a Crust in it presently.' Ladies and 
Gemmen, if I was to quit him, in an instant he would play a 
thousand figaries ; break all your Crockery, drink up your 
Wine, play the Devil and Doctor Faustus with your Wives 
and Darters ; eat your Provisions, steal your Goods and 
Chatties, and commit every kind of Mischief ! He's of 
unbounded Ambition, and by some fortunate Stroke of good 
Luck, more than by his Abilities, proved very successful 
in his Deceptions ; but this Luck was not to last for ever. 
Puft up as full as a blown bladder with conceit, he thought 
he coud conquer the four Quarters of the Globe. So one dark 
Night he stole out of Paris to make an attack on Germany, 
etc., where he assured his Companions they would get 
immense Wealth by their Plunders. But BULL & Co. 
coming up with him by break of day, compelled him to 
surrender, and transported him to Hell Bay {Elba)." 

This was published by James Asperne, at the Bible, Crown 
and Constitution, Cornhill, who displayed the same activity 
in the anti-Napoleonic crusade of 1814 as he had done in 
that of 1803 and 1804. He also advertised for sale, both 
wholesale and retail, " Cruce Dignus ; an Epitaph underneath 
a Gibbet over a Dunghill at Elba," and " Bona Rapta pone 
leno ; or a Dialogue between Napoleon Buonaparte and the 
Legislative Body of France," the Latin words, signifying 
" Lay down the goods you have stolen," being an anagram 
upon Napoleon's name. 

The ballad-maker and the ballad-monger were not idle in 
the spring of 1814. An immense vogue was enjoyed by a song 
to the tune of " Derry Down," given nightly by Mr. Huckell 
at the Surrey Theatre with " tremendous applause." In its 
published form it was surmounted by a rough print in which 
Bonaparte is represented in the act of surrendering his sword 
to Britannia and her allies, while a Cossack stands over him 
in a menacing attitude. In the background is the island of 


Sung by Mr. Huckell at the Surrey Theatre, 181 4- 

Great news, brother Britons, our joy freely share ; 
Hark ! big with glad tidings the guns rend the air. 
The hope so long cherish' d with glory to crown, 
All Europe is up, but the Tyrant is down. 

A rod to all nations has been this proud elf, 
Who we know has at last made a rod for himself. 
The dove flies aloft, with the olive of peace. 
And Boney's proud eagles are all turn'd to geese. 

Bonaparte a Caesar was call'd it is known. 
And he seized upon all he came near as his own ; 
But though this mock Caesar has met with his fate, 
W'e still have a true Alexander the Great. 

Said John Bull when quite sick of invasion Nap grew. 
If you won't come to me, I must e'en go to you, 
And to France Johnny went but a short time ago. 
To toast Europe's cause in good wine of Bordeaux. 

From proud exultation tho' who can refrain, 
Bonaparte I'm sure has no right to complain ; 
Transported with joy tho' all Europe we view. 
Poor Boney you know will be transported too. 

Then hail to the monarchs enrolled with the brave. 

Whose conquering ai-ms only conquer'd to save ; 

Hail Freedom that gave unto Louis the crown. 

Raised the White Standard up, and the tyrant's pull'd down. 

George Cruikshank lent his valuable aid to the embellish- 
ment of a piece of music entitled " Little Nap Horner, or 
Bonaparte meeting his Old Friend at the Island of Elba," 
the words by J. M. E., the music composed by Mr. Hook. 


This melody " caught on " in the British drawing-rooms of 
the Regency, although the words were sad doggerel : — 

Little Nap Horner 

Up in a Corner 

Dreading his doleful doom ; 

He who gave t'other day 

Whole kingdoms away 

Now is glad to find Elba room. 

Old Nicky Horner 

Flew to the Corner, 

Finding his friend was ill ; 

He had lent him a hand 

On Imperial land 

And he sticks to his Elba still. 

Quoth Nick to Nap Horner, 
'* We, up in this Corner, 
Must follow the hai'd-jvare line, 
In Iron and Stealing 
We both have been dealing 
And all at Our Elba's Mine." 

" Alas (says Nap Horner) 

Clubbed to this Corner 

A Knave of Spades I came. 

My Diarnonds were gone, 

And of Hearts I had none, 

So they Elba'd me out of the Game." 

" Never mind (says old Horner) 
Dig Deep in the Corner, 
And this for your comfort know, 
When your labour is past, 
And you've dug to the last 
You'll find Elba down below." 

For the benefit of the unmitiated an explanatory note was 
added to the effect " the island of Elba to which the Corsican 
has been banished (heretofore the Botany Bay of Tuscany) 



































abounds in Iron Mines, and its trade chiefly consists in the 
articles of Iron and Steel Dust." 

We have another curious broadside of ten verses, entitled 
" A Poetical Address to the Usurper Buonaparte," said to 
have been written " by a British Veteran, late Serjeant and 
Clerk to the 56th Regiment of Foot. One of the few surviving 
monuments of the memorable Siege of Gibraltar, now in the 
sixty-fourth year of his age." It opens thus : — 

Thou curse of Europe ! Buonaparte 
Who, by thy cunning, fraud and art. 

The nations didst beguile ; 
With blood-stained crimes upon thy head, 
A Captive Coward thou art led 

To dwell in Elba's Isle. 

And concludes : — 

May God our great Allies preserve. 
They Europe's grateful thanks deserve. 

That changed the tear to smile ; 
Let ev'ry loyal honest heart 
Expand with joy, now Buonaparte 

Laments in Elba's Isle. 

At the foot of the sheet is appended the following note : — 
" The above little poem has been presented to several 
branches of the Royal Family; to their august Majesties 
the Emperor of Russia and King of Prussia; to Marshals 
Bliicher and Platoff ; Members of Parliament ; Admirals and 
general officers ; the Right Honourable the Lord Mayor, and 
other distinguished characters of high Respectability, by the 
Author, William Dickenson, Xo. 8 Duke Street, Lincoln's-in- 

On June 18th, 1814 (one year to a day before Waterloo), 
London celebrated the fleeting Peace which Elba had procured 
for Europe. On that occasion a topical caricature was pro- 
vided to which the title of " Boney Dish'd. A Side Dish 
for the City of London," was given. 


The French caricatures of April-July, 1814, were, as a rule, 
not less severe than those which appeared in London and 
Berlin. In some of these the idol of 1800-1812 is represented 
in a bath of blood, as a waxwork manikin, a whipped top, 
a caged ape, a shuttlecock, a diavolo spool, a jay despoiled 
of its plumes, as Nicholas Philocte, or as Robinson Crusoe. 
One artist, however, in a caricature lettered Le Baiser de 
Judas, satirized the conduct of Augereau (Ogro Marshal) 
who showed marked discourtesy to his fallen chief at Valence, 
while on his way to St. Raphael. From July onwards signs 
of a marked change of public opinion in France are evident, 
Louis XVIII and the Congress of Vienna both proved a 
disappointment, and the " violet " began to resume its old 
place in the affections of Frenchmen.^ This is specially 
apparent in prints like La Bascule (the slim Napoleon weigh- 
ing down the obese Louis), Le Revenant, Le Pate Indigeste, 
Le Destin de la France, and a whole series of pictures recall- 
ing the glories of Marengo, Austerlitz, and Jena. The 
" snuffing-out " of Napoleon, foreshadowed in so many 
caricatures, seemed likely to prove illusory. 

Then came the great surprise of February 26th, 1815. Such 
engravings as Ackermann's profile medallion of Napoleon, 
with the legend, " Tyrant of France. Desolator of Europe. 
Born Aug. 15, 1769. Self-created Emperor May 18, 1803. 
Dethroned April 2, 1814. Transported to Elba under an 
Escort of Cossacks, April 12, 1814," became in a moment out- 
of-date. " Le Revenant " had really returned, and George 
Cruikshank, equal to any occasion, drew a picture of a winged 
devil carrying Napoleon and his followers on his back from 
Elba to the Golfe Jouan, to which was given the title of 
" The Corsican's Last Trip under the Guidance of his Good 
Angel." The accompanying text is not less rancorous than 
that of the pictorial saLires of ten months before : — 

" BUONAPARTE, the extraordinary BUONAPARTE— burst 

the bonds of his seclusion at Elba, and at the head of a hostile 

^ See "Napoleon in Caricature/' Vol. II, pp. 88-95. 


force landed, on the 3rd March, 1815, in the Department of Var 
in France, after a retirement of ten months." 

" It appears that the hypocritical villain, who at the time of his 
cowardly abdication, affected an aversion to the shedding of 
human blood in a civil warfare, has been employed during the 
whole time of his residence at Elba, in carrying on secret and 
treasonable intrigues with the tools of his former crimes in France, 
At length, when his plots were rife, he sailed from Elba, with all 
his Guards between 12 and 1300 in number, on the night of the 
27th February, 1815. 

"A year has not yet elapsed, and this man who pretended the 
wish to spare France the horrors of Civil War, now goes to relume 
the torch of war ! and that which he dared not do with 40,000 
Frenchmen, he now attempts with a thousand banditti, chiefly 
Poles, Neapolitans and Piedmontese ! May Providence, wearied 
out with his crimes, deceive this time the base calculation of his 
cowardice, and abandon him to the vengeance of the laws which 
he has so often violated and trampled under foot. 

" What Judge Jenkins said of the celebrated John Lilbourne, 
may be fairly applied to Buonaparte with a little alteration of the 
words : ' That if the world were emptied of all but Napoleon 
Buonaparte, Buonaparte with Napoleon, and Napoleon with 
Buonaparte, he would not care one jot.' " 

There was no real sympathy for either Talleyrand or the 
Congress of Vienna in Paris, and not much in Europe. The 
" Twelfth Cake " caricatures concerning its interminable 
discussions are well known. There is real humour in Lewis 
Mark's " The European Pantomime," in which the 
" princeaple [sic] characters " are given as Harlequin, 
Mr. Boney ; Pantaloon, Louis XVIII ; and Columbine, 
Marie Louise; with "Clowns, etc., by Congress." On 6th 
April, 1815, Napoleon Avas once more at the Tuileries. On that 
very day he visited the studio of David, in the Place de la 
Sorbonne, to see his latest pictures. On 6th April appeared 
the last of the satirical prints it is necessary to mention 
as an Elba sidelight. It is by George Cruikshank, and is 
entitled " The Congress dissolved before the Cake was cut 
up." Bonaparte bursts into the room through the open door, 


and, brandishing his sword, exclaims ; "Avast, ye Bunglers, 
the Cake ye have taken six months disputing about the 
cutting up, I will do in as many hours." 

The Elba flag is now in London. Its colours have faded 
almost beyond recognition, but it was not till August, 1823, 
when Napoleon had been dead more than two years, that an 
interesting illustration of it was published by its then owner, 
Mr. H. Cureton, of 81 Aldersgate Street. George Cruik- 
shank had some years before made it the subject of a quaint 
caricature, in which he contrived to link together the names 
of Bonaparte, Burdett, and Baring. 

At no period of Napoleon's meteoric career were the artistic 
and literary sidelights more interesting and more instructive 
than during the ten months in which, at the suggestion of 
the Czar and by the will of Europe, he filled the anomalous 
position of Emperor and King of Elba. 


Bacheville, B. Voyages des freres, capitaines de I'cx-garde. 

Bargixet, a. Le grenadier de I'tle d'Elbe. Brussels, 1830. 

Barker. Description of Elba, with a panorama of Portoferraio. 

BiAXCHi, N. Storia documcntata dclla diplomazia curopea in 
Italia, 1814-1861. Torino, 1865. 

Bruxschvicg, L. Cambronne, sa vie civile, i:)olitique et militaire. 
Nantes, 1894. 

Campbell, the late Major-Gexeral Sir Neil. Napoleon at 
Fontainebleau and Elba, being a journal of occurrences in 
1814-15, with notes of conversations. 1869. 

Chautard, J. L'ile d'Elbe et les Cent Jours. 1851. 

CoxsTAXT, L. Memoires. 1830. 

Copia Lettere della Reale Segreteria del Governo di Livorno, 
Manuscript in the Archives of Leghorn. 1814-15. 

Correspoxdaxce de Napoleox I*"'" : publiee par ordre de 
I'Empereur Napoleon III. Vols. XXVII, XXXI. 1869. 

Doris, Charles. Secret Memoirs of Napoleon Buonaparte. With 
an account of the Regency at Blois ; and an itinerary of 
Buonaparte, from Fontainebleau to Elba, by Fabry. 1815. 

DuRAXD, Madame, Veuve du Gexeral. Memoires. 1828. 

Memoires sur Napoleon et Marie Louise, 1810-1814. 1880. 

Ebrixgtox, Viscouxt. Memorandum of two conversations with 
the Emperor Napoleon, on the 6th and Sth of December, 1814. 

Fabre, J. De Fontainebleau a l'ile d'Elbe. 1887. 
Y 337 


Fabry. J. B. G. Itineraire de Buonaparte, depuis son depart de 
Doulevent le 2S Mars, jusqu'a son embarquement a Frejus, 
le 29 AvTil. Paris, 1S14. 

FiEFFE. Napoleon et la Garde. 1S59. 

FiRMix-DiDOT, G. Royaute ou Empire. La France en 1S14, 
dapres les rapports inedits du Comte Angles. 1897. 

Pages d'histoire. 

Flecry de Chaboulox. Memoires pour servir a Thistoire de la 
vie privee, du retour et du regne de Napoleon en 1S15. 
London. 1S19. Brussels. 1820. 

FouRNTZR, A. Deutsche Rundschau, September, 1902. 

Gkuyer, Pali.. Napoleon, roi de I'fle d'Elbe. 1906. 

Helfert, J. A. VON". Napoleon L Fahrt von Fontainebleau 
nach Elba. April-Mai, 1814. Mit Benutzung der amthchen 
Reiseberichte des KaiserUch Oesterrichischen Commissars 
General Roller, Wien, 1S74. 

Maria Louise, Erzherzoginn von Oesterreich, Kaiserin der 

Franzosen. Wien, 1873. 

HoussAVZ. He2shy. " 1814." 

■ 1S15. la premiere restauiation." 

Island Ehpip.e, The, or the scenes of the first exile of the Emperor 
Napoleon I. By the author of '" BlondeUe '* (Henry Drmn- 
mond WoLff). 1S55. 

luxG, Colonel H. F. T. Lucien Bonaparte et ses memoires. 

Vol. in. 

Laborde. Napoleon et sa Garde, ou relation du voyage de 

Fontainebleau a Tile d'Elbe. 1840. 
Lambardi, S. Memorie snl Mont Argentario. Firenze, 1866. 
Larret. >Iadame Mere. 1892. 
I4A Vesite sur les Cent Jours, principxalement par rapp>ort a la 

renaissance projetee de TEmpire romain ; par im citoyen de 

Corse (Lucien Bonaparte). Brussels, 1825. 

Lit:. Giovaxnt. Napoleone all' isola d' Elba, secondo le carte di 
un archivio segreto, ed altre, edite ed inedite. Milano, 1888. 

iLvNuscRiT de I'ile dElbe. Dusseldorf, 1819. 
Massox, Frederic. L'affaire Maubreuil. 1907. 

Marie Walewska, maitresse de Napoleon I^a- 1897. 


Masson, Frederic. Napoleon et sa famille. Vol. X. 1913. 
MoNiER, A. D. B. Une annee de la vie de I'Empereur Napoleon. 

NiNCi, Giuseppe. Storia dell isola dell' Elba. Portofcrraio, 

Nouvelle Revue Retrospective. Documents sur le sejour de 

Napoleon I^« a File d'Elbc. 1894. 
Nuovi documexti su Napoleone all' Elba : da Dr. Escard, A 

Lumbroso, E. Michel, L. H. Pelissier. Roma, 1906. 

Pelissier, Leon G. Le Registre de I'lle d'Elbe. Lettres et ordres 
inedits de Napoleon I^«(28 Mai, 1814-22 Fevrier, 1815). 1897. 

Pellet, Marcellin. Napoleon a I'ile d'Elbe. 1888. 
Peyrusse, Baron. Memorial et Archives, Carcassone. 1869. 

Lettres inedites, publiees par L. G. Pelissier. 1894. 

PiCHOT, A. Napoleon a I'ile d'Elbe : chronique des evenements 
de 1814 et 1815, d'apres le journal du Colonel Sir Neil 
Campbell, le journal d'un detenu et autres documents inedits 
ou peu connus. 1873. 

Pons Andre (de l'Herault). Souvenirs et anecdotes de I'ile 
d'Elbe : publics d'apres le manuscrit original, par Leon G. 
Pelissier. 1897. 

Memoire de Pons de l'Herault aux Puissances Allies, by 

L. G. PeHssier. 1899. 

Chronique de I'ile d'Elbe. Memoires Contemporaines. 

Saint Amand, Imbert de. Marie Louise, I'ile d'Elbe et les Cent 
Jours. 1885. 

Santoni, G. B. Memoric Patrie. Vol. XIV. Manuscript in the 
Bibliotcca Labronica, Leghorn. 

Schmidt, Karl. Napoleon paa Elba. Copenhagen, 1909. 

Stenger, G. Le rctour de I'Empereur en 1815. 1910. 

Thiebaut, Arsene. Voyage a I'ile d'Elbc. 1808. 

Truchsess-Waldburg, Graf von. Napoleon Buonaparte's 
Reisc von Fontainebleau nach Frcjus vom 17 bis 29 April, 
1814. Berlin, 1815. French and English translations, 1815, 


Underwood, T. R. A narrative of the memorable events in 
Paris, 1814 ; also anecdotes of Buonaparte's journey to 
Elba. Edited by J. Britton. 1828. 

UssHER, Captain Sir Thomas. A narrative of events connected 
with the first abdication of the Emperor Napoleon, his 
embarkation at Frejus and voyage to Elba, on board His 
Majesty's ship Undaunted. Dublin, 1841. Reprinted in 
'" Napoleon's last voyages," edited by Dr. J. Holland Rose. 

Vernon, G. F. Sketch of a conversation with Napoleon at Elba. 
Miscellanies of Philobiblion Society, Vol. VIII. 1863. 

Vigo, Pietro. Ra})porti di capitani di bastimenti sulla fuga di 
Napoleon I dall isola d'Elba. Rivista Marittima, Juni, 1902. 

Vincent, General. Memorial de File d'Elbe. Memoires de 
Tons, Vol. III. 

Vivian, J. H. Minutes of a conversation with Napoleon Buona- 
parte at Elba, in January, 1815. 1839. 

Weigall, Rachel. The correspondence of Lord Burghersh. 1912. 








f " > 




Z "^ 

S 4; 


y^ s 



o s " =^ 


o: " C t; 


C O 'j z 

< < ^ s 


ffi Z ^ Q 


— tM n in 



Abeille, the, 143, 290 

Acona, Elba : plain of, 190, 196 

Addington, Henry, 80 

Adye, Captain, 289, 306, 307, 308, 

Agrippa Posthumus, 129 

Aix-en-Savoie, 216, 217, 218 

Ajaccio, 81, 109, 279 

Albertini, Commander of San Fio- 
renzo, 294 

Alexander I, Czar of Russia, 17, 18, 
26, 27, 31, 37, 38, 42, 215, 216, 267, 
273, 276, 320 

Allies enter Paris, 17 ; reviewed in 
the Champs Elysees, 26 ; pro- 
clamation, 26 

Allori, guardian of the cisterns of 
Portoferraio, 237, 238 

Andrieux, Captain, of the Zephyr, 
311, 312 

Angles, French Minister of Police, 
123, 173,226,270,283,287 

Antibes, 315, 316 

Antwerp, 83, 255, 257 

Archambault, footman to Napoleon, 

Arrighi, Giuseppe Filippo, Vicar- 
General, 101 et seq. ; 103, 120 

Artois, Comte d', 40, 278 

Asperne, James, publisher, 330 

Augereau, Marshal, 64, 258, 259, 334 

Augusta, Princess, 222 

Austria, 17, 28, 267, 268, 269, 274 

Auxerre, 57, 62 

Avignon, 57, 65 

Baccini, President to the Tribunal at 

Elba, 121, 128 
Baia, 142 
Bailey, Lieutenant, transport officer, 

Baillon, Chevalier, Second Grooin 

of the Bedchamber, 79, 119, 120 
Balbiani, intendant, 122, 128 
Bance, publisher, 323 
Bank of France, 18 
Barbarossa, corsair, 92, 125 

Bargigli, sculptor, 192 

Barham, Lord, 255 

Barriere de Pan tin, Paris, 18 

Bartohni, sculptor, 192 

Bartolucci, agent to Napoleon at 
Leghorn, 271 

Bastia, 177, 279 

Bathurst, Earl, 42, 48 

Battersby, Captain, of the Grass- 
hopper, 157, 158 

Bausset, 34, 37, 54, 218 

Bautzen, battle of, 76, 117 

Bavaria, King of, 222 

Beauharnais, Eugene de, 149, 213, 
222, 283 

Beauregard, Chevalier Fourreau de, 
physician-in-chief to Napoleon at 
Elba, 79, 119 

Belliard, 20 

Berhn, 76 

Berluc, Madame de, 283 

Bernadotte, General, 75 

Berne, 220 

Bernotti, orderly officer, 120, 177 

Bertaux, J. Duplessis, portrait of 
Napoleon by, 323 

Berthier, Marshal, 30, 54 

Bertrand, Comte, 30, 52. 53, 55, 56, 
59, 66, 71, 79, 99, 103, 104, 105, 
108, 111, 114, 116, 117, 122, 125, 
126, 127, 128, 130, 135, 139, 140, 
141, 143, 144, 151, 155, 159, 164, 
167, 169, 170, 171, 172, 173, 175, 
178, 179, 181, 184, 185, 187, 188, 
196, 200, 205, 208, 219, 221, 225, 
226, 230, 231, 235, 236, 237, 239, 
240, 247, 269, 271, 280, 288, 294, 
297, 301, 302, 305, 306, 309 

— Comtesse, 194, 233, 270, 306, 

— Hortense, 116 
Berwick, H.M.S., 81 
Binelli, orderly officer, 120 
Blucher, Prince von, 18, 19, 76, 258 
Boinod, General, 95, 96, 146 
Bonaparte, Caroline, Queen of Naples, 

214, 268, 269 




Bonaparte, Elise, Grand Duchess of 
Tuscany, 93, 110, IGO, 175, 19G, 197, 
234, 244, 248 

— Jerome, 35, 36, 39, 40, 174, 222 

— Joseph, 21, 23, 24, 35, 36, 39, 40, 
85, 234, 244, 278 

— Letizia (Madame Mere), 35, 39, 64, 
81, 113, 148, 157 et seq., 167, 172, 
174, 177, 178, 201, 233, 243, 308 

— Louis, 35, 39 

— Lucien, 157 

— Marie PauUne, 70, 71, 109, 110, 
113, 135, 142, 148, 152, 159, 161, 
164 et seq., 167, 171, 172, 173, 
174, 229, 233, 234, 244, 271, 272, 

Borghese, Prince, 110, 173, 197 

Bouilledou, Chateau de, 70 

Bouillerie, Baron de la, Treasurer- 
General, 22, 208 

Boulevard des Italiens, 18 

Bourges, 270 

Bow'yer's " Illustrated Record," 

Brewis, Mr. Alfred, Napoleonic collec- 
tion of, 323 

Briare, 57, 62 

Brienne, 76, 149 

Briguole, Madame de, 220 

Broadley's collection of Napoleonic 
MSS., Mr. A. M., 78 

Brulart, Governor of Corsica, 228, 
278, 279, 290, 294 

Brussels, 257 

Bry, Auguste, publisher, 324 

Buonaparte, Carlo di. Napoleon's 
father, 109, 190, 191 

Burghersh, Lord, 222, 310, 314 

Cadore, Due de, 216 

Calade, 66 

Calvi, 81 

Cambaceres, Arch- Chancellor, 21, 35 

Cambronne, General, Commander of 
the Imperial Guard, 138, 146, 147, 
209, 280, 283 

Campaign of 1814, 19 

Campbell, Colonel Neil, English 
Commissioner in Elba, 49, 55, 56, 
57, 60, 61, 62, 63, 64, 70, 74, 75, 76, 
77, 79, 80, 81, 95, 98, 103, 104, 105, 
114, 122, 123, 125, 127, 128, 129, 
131, 135, 139, 140, 143, 153, 157, 
158, 159, 163, 187, 189, 194, 195, 198, 
199, 224, 226, 232, 247, 253, 258, 
259, 260, 263, 269, 270, 275, 276, 
278, 279, 283, 285, 286, 287, 288, 

289, 290, 298, 300, 301, 302, 305, 
306, 307, 310, 312, 313, 315, 316 
Campo, 88, 129, 132, 187 

— Longone, 130 

— Marina, 88 

Canova, his statues of Letizia and 

Pauline Bonaparte, 174 
Cape S. Andrea, 290 
Capo di Stella, 196 
Capoliveri, 91, 198, 199 
Capraia, 83, 85, 93, 104, 113, 142 
Carcassonne, 118, 119 
Cardel, artist, 324 
Caricatures of Napoleon, 324 et seq. 
Caroline, advice-boat, 129, 131, 143, 

157, 309, 310 
Caroline of Wiirtemberg, 222 

— Princess of Wales, 220 

— Queen of the Two Sicilies, 217, 
219, 222 

Carrara, 192 

Casa Bonaparte, Ajaccio, 109 

Castlereagh, Viscount, 42, 43, 48, 54, 

57, 75, 140, 273, 274, 275, 277, 306, 

Cathcart, Lord, 75 
Caulaincourt, A. A. L. de, 18, 27, 30, 

32, 36, 43, 47, 48, 52, 53, 57, 258 
Cerboli, 86 
Cette, 95 
Chaboulon, Fleury de, 110, 297, 298, 

299, 300 
Champs Elysees, 18, 26 
Chapel to the Madonna del Monte, 

Charlet, artist, 174 
Charrier-Moissard, Captain de, 136 
Chartres, 35 
Chatillon, 255, 259 

Chautard, commander of the Incon- 
stant, 295, 316 
Cipriani, servant to Napoleon, 178, 

181, 271 
Civita Vecchia, 86, 142, 143, 272, 289, 

294, 314 
Clam, Major, A.D.C. to General 

Koller, 55, 58, 71, 72, 79, 95, 104, 

Colin, Controller of the Household, 79 
Colombani, Madame, 298 

— Major, 198 

Colonna d' Istria, chamberlain to 

Madame Mere, 157, 158, 221, 271, 

297, 305 
Congress of Vienna, 75, 136, 219, 266 

etseq., 286, 297, 301, 335 
Constant, chief valet to Napoleon, 63, 




Cooke, Rlr., Under-Secretary of State, 

Corfu, 42, 273 
Cornuell, Captain, 146 
Corsica, 27, 42, 84, 87, 88, 92, 153, 

191, 228, 229, 291 
Corsican Guard, 145 
Corvisart, 216, 217, 218 
Cosimo de Medici, Duke of Florence, 

Cosmopoli, 92 
Crane, Warren, sale, 324 
Craonne, battle of, 25 
Crawford's collection of Napoleonic 

MSS., Lord, 236, 249 
Cruikshank, George, 326, 331, 335, 

Curar/)a, frigate, 127, 155, 172 
Cussy, 218 

Dahling, H. A., " parade portrait " 
of Napoleon, 325 

Dalesme, General, French Coinman- 
dant of Elba, 94, 95, 98, 99, 
100, 105, 125, 126, 128, 138, 144, 

Danzig, siege of, 76 

Darling, M.P., Frederick, received by 
Napoleon, 252 

Davout, Marshal, 258, 299 

Demidoff, Prince Anatole, 91, 113, 

Paul, 86, 175 

Deschamps, Chevalier, First Groom 
of the Bedchamber, 79, 110, 119. 
120, 209, 239 

Dey of Algiers, the, 141 

Digne, 57 

Dillon, General Arthur, 115 

Dodgin, Captain, 323 

DorviUe, usher to Napoleon, 121 

Douglas, Colonel, received by Napo- 
leon, 249 

Dragut, corsair, 92, 129 

Dresden, 76, 148 

Drouot, General, 20, 68, 74, 79, 95, 
96. 104, 116, 117, 122, 125, 128, 131, 
143, 144, 145, 151, 155, 159, 167, 
170, 196, 198, 200, 204, 205, 226, 
227, 229, 231, 232, 236, 290, 297, 
301, 304, 305, 306, 309, 317 

Dryade, French frigate, 70, 136, 138, 
155, 156 

Dubourg, M., engraver, 322 

Dudon, agent of the Provisional 
Government, 51 

Dumas, 85, 319 

Dupont de I'Etang, Comte Pierre, 
Minister of War, 58, 94, 278 

Duroc, Michel, Due de Friuli, 115, 
199, 200 

Ebrington, Viscount, received by 
Napoleon, 247, 252, 264 

Elba : suggested as Napoleon's king- 
dom by the Czar, 27, 32 ; finally 
accepted, 42 ; the Emperor Francis 
disapproves, 43 ; description, 85 
et seq. ; climate, 87 ; industries, 
87 et seq. ; once a Roman colony, 
92 ; evacuated by British troops 
in 1797, 93 ,• , given by Napoleon 
to his sister Elise, 93 ; blockaded 
by a British fleet, 93 ; proposed 
canal, 154 ; suggested return to 
the name Cosmopoli, 192 

Elban National Guards, 107, 145 

Emigres, the, 28 

England and Napoleon, 42, 43, 48, 
49, 60, 80, 83, 122, 136, 139, 141, 
262, 263, 287 

Englishmen received by Napoleon at 
Elba, 247 et seq. 

Erskine, David, 323 

ittoile, chebec, 143 

— bombard, 305, 306, 309 

Etoilefort, 189 

Fain, Napoleon's secretary, 52, 53 
Fairburn, John, publisher, 321 
Faubourg Saint-Martin, Paris, 18 
Fazakerley, Mr., received by Napo- 
leon, 251 
Felton, British Consul at Leghorn, 

Fere Champenoise, battle of, 77 
Ferrero, anarcliist, tablet to, 90 
Fesch, Cardinal, 39, 64, 142, 268, 271, 

Filidoro, Captain of the port of 

Portoferraio, 146 
Financial accounts of Napoleon's 

rule at Elba, 206-8, 210-11 
Flahaut, General, 20 
Fkur-dc-Lys, the, 228, 290, 311, 312, 

313, 316 
Fleurus, battle of, 116 
Florence, 36, 93, 157, 271, 283, 289, 

Fontainebleau, 18, 19, 21, 27, 28, 35, 

37, 43, 49, 54, 5o, HI, 112, 115, 

118, 181, 208, 215, 227, 257, 262, 

293, 294, 321, 322, 328 



Fort Falcone, Elba, 90, 93 

— Inglesc, Elba, 93 

— Stella, Elba, 89, 108, 138 
Fossombroni, Minister of the Grand 

Duke Ferdinand at Florence, 278 
Fouche, Joseph, 299 
Fourreau, 113, 309 
Fox, Charles James, 252, 253 
Francis I, Emperor of Austria, 37, 

38, 43, 55, 72, 216, 218, 220, 221, 

Frederick William II, King of 

Prussia, 17, 26, 215, 216 
Frejus, 70, 72, 111, 135, 143, 216 
Friedland, 115 
Fromeiiteau, 20 

Gaeta, 314 

Galbois, Colonel, 35 

Gap, 57 

Garat, Captain, 316 

Garibaldi, 90 

Gatti, apothecary to Napoleon, 79, 

Genoa, 92, 127, 142, 143, 153, 271 
George III : celebration of his birth- 
day at Elba, 155 
Giglio, 104 

Girardin, Anne Laure, 115 
Gorgona, 84, 104, 113 
Gottmann, commander at Longone. 

130, 131, 175 
Gourgaud, Colonel, 20, 54, 175, 232, 

240, 293, 297 
Grasi^hopper, the, 157, 158, 159 
Gratton, Mr., English visitor to 

Napoleon, 314, 315 
Grenoble, 57 
Gualandi, Mayor of Rio Montagne, 

120, 125, 126 
Guasco, commander of Napoleon's 

Corsican battalion, 228 
Guastalla, Duchy of, 44, 49, 267 
Guerrazzi, poet, 90 

Hallowell, Admiral, 141, 287 

Hamburg, 83 

Hanau, 115, 148 

Hanhart, Messrs., lithograph of Napo- 
leon by, 323 

Hardonberg, Baron de, 47 

Hastings, Lieutenant, his description 
of Napoleon, 78, 95, 105 

Hoare, Sir Richard Colt, 320, 321 

Hochard, 143 

llohcnlindcn, battle of, 116 

Holland, Lord, 251, 272 

Hollard, head gardener to Napoleon, 

121, 271 
Horses used by Napoleon at Elba, 

148, 149 
Hortense, Queen, 152 
Hubert, valet to Napoleon, 121 
Hugo, Victor, 90 

Ibbetson, Denzii, 323 
Imperial Guard at Elba, 138, 143 
— Palace, Rio Marina, 185 
Inconstant, brig, 136, 138, 142, 155, 

271, 272, 294, 295, 296, 300, 305, 

306, 307, 308, 309, 310, 311, 312, 

313, 316, 318 
Insola, peninsula of, 196 
Invasion of England, Napoleon's 

threatened, 253 et scq. 
Isabey, 218, 324 
Italian campaign of 1796, 82, 93 

Jackson, Basil, 323 

James, Captain, of H.M. brig Swallow, 

Jersmanowski, 79, 105, 144, 145, 146, 

Jilli, valet to Napoleon, 121 
Josephine, Empress, 80, 115, 152, 

223, 235, 244 
Jukes, F., engraver, 322 

Kalisch, 76 

Kellermann, Francois Etionnc, 116, 

Roller, General, Austrian Commis- 
sioner, 49, 55, 56, 58, 59, 60, 62, 
66, 68, 72, 79, 81, 82, 98, 104, 105, 
110, 122, 127, 286 

Labadie, Adjutant Pierre, 288 

Laczinski, Count, 181 

LaeiUla, Neapolitan warship, 152 

Lafhtte, 213 

Lapi, Signor, chamberlain to Napo- 
leon, 120, 164, 172, 173, 174, 195, 

Larabit, Lieutenant, 130, 131 

Las Cases, JMarquis de, 107 

La Scola, 129, 132 

Latta, Mr. \Villiam J., collector of 
Napoleonic rariora, 324 

Lavalette, 213 



Lebel, Colonel, 146 
Lefebvre, Marshal, 20, 29, 32 
Lefevie, Eobert, artist, 323, 324 
Leghorn, 85, 86, 104, 145, 153, 156, 

195, 229, 270, 271, 283, 285, 287, 

289, 298, 304 
Leipzig, battle of, 115, 148, 264, 325 
Lemaitre, publisher, 324 
Lemoine, b.a., Colonel, received by 

Napoleon, 249 
Leopold, Pi-ince, of Sicily, 289 
Levachez, 323 
Levrette, schooner, 142 
Litta, M., 285, 286 
Linguella, the, Elba, 89 
Liverpool, Earl of, 49, 267, 273 
Livia, 129 
Locker, Mr., secretary to Sir Edward 

Pellew, 127 
Longone, 93, 143, 187 
Louis XVIII, 26, 33, 50, 83, 135, 173, 

273, 274, 275, 276, 283, 287, 288, 

291, 292, 328 
Louis of Parma, Prince, 267 
Louise, Princess, 76 
Lowe. Sir Hudson, 75, 76, 306 
Luc, 70 

Liitzen, battle of, 76, 117, 149 
Lyons, 57, 64, 136, 258 

Macdonald, Marshal, 30, 31, 32, 42, 

49, 53, 54 
MacDonnell, British Consul at Al- 
giers, 141 
" Madame Mere," picture by Gerard, 

Madone, La : Napoleon's house at 

Marciana Alta, 176 
Magazzini, 125 
Maison Vantini, residence of Madame 

Mere at Elba, 159, 160 
Mallet, 146, 317 
Malmaison, 80, 166, 183 
Manganaro, former proprietor of 

Pauline Bonaparte's estate at 

Elba, 165 
Marchand, 121, 171, 233, 309 
Marciana Alta, 88, 129, 176 
— Marina, 88, 94, 128, 182, 187, 188, 

Marengo, battle of, 263, 282 
Maret, 30, 52, 53, 54, 258, 297, 298, 

Marie Louise, Empress : at reception 

at the Tuilories, 23rd January, 

1814, 19 ; campaign of 1814, 19 ; 

left in Paris as regent, 21 ; Napo- 

leon's plans for her should he die, 
22 ; leaves Paris, 23, 34 ; at Blois, 
35 ; at Chartres, 35 ; letters from 
Napoleon, 35, 71, 127, 209 ; writes 
to him, 36, 221 ; communicates 
with her father, 37 ; starts for 
Orleans, 39 ; her guard at Parma, 
144 ; at the baths of Aix, 158 ; 
inherits an estate in Elba, 174 ; 
and Napoleon's intrigue with the 
Countess WalewsUa, 181 ; funds, 
210 ; at Rambouillet, 215 ; arrives 
at Schoenbrunn, 217 ; meets 
Neipperg, 218 ; his sinister in- 
fluence, 220 

Marie Louise of Spain, 267 

Marina di Giove, 304 

Mariotti, French Consul at Leghorn, 
270, 271, 278, 283, 285, 289, 304, 
307, 313 

Marmont, Marshal, 21, 27, 29, 31, 32, 

Slarseilles, 70, 153 

IMassena, Marshal, 286 

Matas, Niccolo, designer of the 
Elban museum of Napoleonic relics, 

]\Iathias, footman to Napoleon, 121 

Matthilde, daughter of Jerome Bona- 
parte, 174 

Maxwell, r.a., Major, received by 
Napoleon, 249 

Mayer, M. Godefroy, 323 

Mazzini, 90 

Medici, Cosimo de, 192 

Mellini, Rosa, companion to Madame 
Mere, 308 

Meloria, naval battle of, 92 

Melpomine, French frigate, 228, 290, 
311, 313 

Meneval, secretary to Marie Louise, 
39, 52, 71, 144, 209, 216, 217, 218, 
219, 221, 244 

Metternich, Prince, 39, 40, 47, 68, 
268, 272 

Milan, 285 

— Decree, 82 
Moncey, Marshal, 29 

Monier, Adjutant of Engineers, 131 

Montalivet, 21, 241 

Montargis, 62 

Montcabrie, Captain de, 70, 136, 138 

Mont Conis, 62 

— de Milan, 273, 277 
Monte alia Quata, 86 

— Calamita, 87 

— Capanne, 86 

Montebello, Duchesse de, 34. 218 



Monte Cristo, 85, 92, 93, 104, 
290, 314 

— Giove, 86 

— Serrato, 225 
Montelimar, 65 

Montesquieu, Comtesse de, 221, 
Montholon, Colonel, 54, 292, 293, 

297, 299 

Montresor, General, 94 

Moreau, General, 116, 260 

Mortier, Marshal, 27 

Moscow, 118,264 

Mouche, the, 143 

Moulins, 63 

Mount Thabor, battle of, 54 

Mulini Palace, the, 108 et seq., 
137, 152, 156, 169, 187, 230, 
239, 247, 288, 308, 309 

Murat, Joachim, King of Naples, 
260, 264, 266, 267, 268, 269, 
273, 275, 276, 277, 278, 286, 
297, 305, 314 

Muratori, 242 

Murray, R. W., 287 






Nansouty, General, 157 

Naples, 93, 285, 297 

Napoleon : reception of officers of 
the National Guard at the Tuileries, 
23rd January, 1814, 19; the 
campaign of 1814, 19 et seq. ; 
anxious to make peace with the 
Czar, 20 ; his correspondence with 
Joseph Bonaparte, 21 et seq. ; 
belief in fate, 25 ; loyalty of his 
army, 26 ; at Fontainebleau, 27 ; 
deposed by the Senate, 27 ; 
Caulaincourt repoi-ts his interview 
with the Czar, 28 ; harangues the 
army, 28 ; hears of Marmont's 
treason, 29 ; hears opinions of his 
marshals, 30 ; writes a conditional 
abdication, 31 ; final act of 
abdication, 32 et seq., 42 ; coldness 
of his troops, 33 ; private treasure, 
34 ; his letters to the Empress. 35, 
39, 71, 216, 217, 220; attitude 
towards Marie Louise, 36 ; and the 
Ti'eaty of Fontainebleau, 43, 50 ; 
independent monarch as King of 
Elba, 50 ; his treatment by Louis 
XVIII, 50, 51 ; gives up Crown 
jewels, estates, and furniture, 51 ; 
his private fortune, 51 ; attempts 
suicide, 52 et seq. ; receives the 
Commissioners of the Powers, 56 ; 
his appearance, 56 ; complains 

that the Allies have been unfaith- 
ful, 59 ; farewell to the Old Guard, 
60 ; leaves Fontainebleau, 62 ; 
journey to the coast, 60 et seq. ; 
conversation with Commissioners, 
63 ; meets Augereau, 64, 65 ; 
insulted by the populace, 66 ; 
disguises himself, 66, 68 ; dread of 
the mob, 69 ; letter to the Emperor 
Francis, 72 ; opinion of the French, 
72 ; boards H.M.S. Undaunted, 74 ; 
the voyage to Elba, 79 et seq. ; 
ignorance of the principles of 
commerce, 80 ; plans for the 
French navy, 83 ; his description 
of Gorgona, 84 ; as fisherman, 88 ; 
curious memento a.t Elba, 91 ; 
annual memorial service, 91 ; 
burned in effigy at Marciana, 94 ; 
arrives at Elba, 95 ; his reception, 
97 ; declaration of 4th May, 1814, 
100 ; chooses a flag, 103 ; lands, 
104 et seq. ; at the Hotel de Ville, 
105, 107 ; on the advantages of 
early rising, 107 ; selects a house, 
108; collects a library. 111; 
improves the Mulini, 112; first 
social reception at Elba, 114; 
insists on strict etiquette, 122 ; 
charity, 122 ; receives English 
visitors, 123 ; expedition to Rio, 
125 ; letter to Marie Louise (9th 
May, 1814), 127 ; visits Porto 
Longone, 128 ; fortifies Pianosa, 
130 ; Utopian schemes, \^2 et seq. ; 
plays chess, 135 ; hears of French 
dissatisfaction, 135 et seq. ; speech 
to the Imperial Guard, 138 ; his 
attitude towards Colonel Campbell, 
141 ; his correspondence, 142 ; his 
army, 146, 150 ; distress at the 
news of Josephine's death, 152 ; 
Continental system applied to 
Elba, 153 et seq. ; attends High 
Mass, 154 ; intended for the navy, 
158 ; joined by his mother, 159 ; 
expects Marie Louise, 161 ; celebra- 
tion of his birthday, 162 et seq. ; 
as an architect, 164 ; his country 
house, 165 ; favourite drive, 168 ; 
his wines, 170 ; in pictures, 174 ; 
as an agriculturist. 175, 190; his 
liermitage at Marciana Alta, 176 ; 
meets the Countess Walewska, 
179 ; at the Palace of Porto 
Longone, 1 84 ; at the Imperial 
Palace, Rio, 185 ; plans a harbour, 
186 ; plans for defence, 186 et seq. ; 



as patron of sculpture, 192 
reason for his improvements at 
Elba, 193 ; his finance, 194 et seq. 
levies taxes, 198 ; his self-esteem 
201 ; his parsimony, 205 ; com 
municates with Marie Louise, 208 
writes to the Grand Duke of 
Tuscan j% 221 ; receives last letter 
from Marie Louise, 221 ; habits at 
Elba, 224 et seq. ; love of incessant 
change, 226 ; writings of his youth, 
227 ; converts church into a 
theatre, 229; gives balls, 230; 
cheats at cards, 233 ; sailing ex- 
peditions, 234 ; Elban navy, 238 ; 
ruined by the Austrian marriage, 
241 ; compared to Cola di Rienzo, 
242 ; his true character, 243 et 
seq. ; devoted to Marie Louise, 
244 ; receives English visitors, 
247 et seq. ; discusses the proposed 
invasion of England, 253 et seq. ; 
remarks about Italy, 260 ; con- 
spiracy for making him King 
of Italy, 269, 296 ; plots against 
his life, 278 et seq. ; his discon- 
tents, 291 ; decides to leave Elba, 
300 ; embarks for France, 309 ; 
lands, 318 ; at the Tuileries, 335 

" Napoleon at Areola," picture by 
Gros, 174 

" Napoleon Crowned," picture by 
Gerard, 174 

Napoleon III, 119 

Napoleonic relics, Elban museum of, 
174 et seq. 

National Guard, French, 18, 19 

Neipperg, General Covmt, 218, 219 

Nelson, Lord, 291 

Nemours, 62 

Nesselrode, Count von, 28, 30, 42, 

Neuville, Hyde de, 283, 289 

Nevers, 63 

Ney, Marshal, 29, 30, 31, 32, 42, 47 

Noverraz, groom to Napoleon, 121 

Oken, De Prokesch, 223 

Olewieff, Major, adjutant to General 

Schouvalotf, 62, 68 
Orange, Princess of, 76 
Orgon, 66 

Orleans, 37, 38, 39, 51, 216 
— Due d', 299, 300 
Orme, Edward, publisher, 322 
Omano, General, 183 
Oudinot, INIarshal, 30, 32 

Palace of Porto Longoiie, 184 

Palermo, 289 

Palmajola, 86, 93, 186, 187, 193, 290, 
301, 302, 306 

Paoli, Captain of the Elban Gen- 
darmes, 120, 146, 198, 237 

Paris : entry of the allied troops into, 

Parma, Duchy of, 36, 44, 49, 71, 144, 

Partridge, brig, the, 113, 289, 300, 
304, 306, 307, 308, 310, 311, 313, 
314, 315, 316 

Peace of Amiens, 80, 252, 320 

Pelard, valet to Napoleon, 53, 121 

Pelissier, L. G., and the works of 
Andre Pons, 96 

Pellew, Sir Edward, 83 

Perez, orderly officer, 120 

Perrin, 294 

Petit, General, 61 

Peyrusse, Chevalier, Treasurer of the 
Crown, 79, 96, 105, 118, 139, 145, 
170, 172, 174, 205, 206, 208, 209, 
210, 212, 213, 215, 293, 297, 306, 
309, 316 

Peyrusse, Baron Guillaume, 117 et 

Piacenza, Duchy of, 267 

Pianosa, 85, 92, 93, 129, 130, 131, 132, 
133, 134, 143, 145, 186, 187, 190, 
193, 278, 290, 301, 302, 314 

Piazza Cavour, Portoferraio, 89, 90 

— d'Amii, Portoferraio, 90 
Piccolomini, General Spannoclii, 

Governor of Leghorn, 270 
Pichegru, General, 260 
Pinion, lithograph of Napoleon by, 

Piombino, 55, 71, 86, 92, 93, 110, 143, 

248, 271, 314 

— Prince of, 92 

— straits of, 154 
Pisa, 92, 184 
Pisani, Captain, 130 
Placentia, Duchy of, 44, 49 
Poggi, Judge, 121 
Poggio, 129, 188 
Poland, 83, 266, 267 

Pons. Andre, 95, 96, 97, 100, 123, 125, 
126, 127, 154, 156, 161, 162, 185, 
190, 191, 197, 199, 200, 201, 204, 
205, 225, 230, 232, 235, 245, 278, 
296, 304, 309 

Portici, 142 

Portoferraio, ^ et seq., 129, 131, 135, 
143, 144, 153, 159, 161, 164, 170, 
186 et seq., 229, 230, 234, 235, 270, 



271, 279, 283, 289, 295 ct scq., 305, 

309, 313, 314, 321, 322, 328 
Porto Longone, 91, 93, 128, 130, 132, 

170, 182, 184, 185, 18G, 188, 289, 

— Vecchio, 86 

Portraiture of Napoleon at Elba, 323 
Portugal, 275 
Pozzo di Borgo, 274 
Pradines, 63 
Prague, 59 

Prince Regent, the, 49, 76 
Procchio, 187, 188 
Proclamation of the AlHes, 31st 

March, 1814, 26 
Provisional Government, 27, 47, 51, 

Prussia, 17, 266, 274 

Rambouillet, 22, 34, 41, 209, 215, 217 
Ramolino, 294, 295 
Rasommouffsky, Comte de, 47 
Rathery, secretary to Napoleon, 79, 

121, 309 
Regency, Council of the, 2\ ct seq, 
Reichstadt, Due de, 19, 21, 22, 23, 

34, 43, 171, 174, 217, 221, 223, 244, 

245, 252, 317 
Ricci, 301, 305, 307 
Richon, Captain, 143, 157 
Rienzo, Cola di, 242, 243 
Rio, 93, 94, 125, 185, 188, 199 

— Alto, 88 

— Marina, 88, 125, 185 

— Montagne, 125, 189 
Roanne, 63, 64 
Rohan, Comtesse de, 231 
Romagna, 133 

Roule, Captain, chief orderly, 131, 

146, 147, 153 
Roustam, mameluke, 54 
Rowlandson, Thomas, 326 
Ruelle, funeral service of Josephine 

at, 152 
Ruspoli, Prince Camillo, owner of the 

San Martino estate, 175 
Russell, Lord John, received by 

Napoleon, 248, 249 
Russia, 17, 266 

Saint Esprit, the, 305, 306, 309, 310 
— Joseph, the, 309 
Sainte Marguerite, 278 
St. Denis, groom to Napoleon, 121 
St. Francis, barrack of, 108, 138, 

St. Helena, 96, 121, 166, 167, 214, 
226, 227, 232, 240, 249, 252, 257, 
275, 277, 279, 281, 282, 290, 291, 
293, 297, 299, 304, 306, 323 

St. Raphael, 72 

St. Tropez, 55, 70 

San Cristino, patron saint of Porto- 
ferraio, 154, 161 

San Fiorenzo, 294 

San Martino, 148, 149, 164, 239, 251, 

Napoleonic museum at, 86 

Santa Cruz, 93 

— Lucia, 275 

Santini, usher to Napoleon, 121 

Sarri, Lieutenant, 142 

Savary, General, 21, 23 

Savona, 62 

Savournin, secretary to Bertrand, 

Saxony, 266, 267 

Schoenbrunn, Castle of. 217, 221 

Schouvaloff, Count, Russian Com- 
missioner, 37, 38, 39, 40, 49, 55, 56, 
60, 62, 66, 68 

Schwartzenberg, Prince von, 17, 19, 
26, 28, 258, 261 

Scitivaux, receiver for the Rio mines, 

Scola P'ort, off Pianosa, 186, 187 

Scott, Mr., received by Napoleon, 
249 et seq. 

Seahorse, H.M.S., 130 

" Sedia di Napoleone," the, 177 

Segur, Comte de, 53 

Senno, orderly officer, 120, 197 

Smith, Captain, received by Napo- 
leon, 249 

Souham, General, 31 

Spain, 276 

Spannocchi, General, Governor of 
Leghorn, 307 

Stadion, 40 

Stahremberg, Austrian Commander 
at Leghorn and Piombino, 271 

Steuben, artist, 174 

Stewart, Sir Charles, 42 

Stockholm, 75 

Swallow, brig, 155 

Taillade, Commander of the Incon- 
stant 142, 272, 278, 294, 295,296, 
312, 316 

Talleyrand-Perigord, Charles Maiu-ice 
de, 21 et seq., 30, 48, 50, 65, 267, 
268, 273 et scq., 335 

Tahna, 218 



Tavelle, Colonel, Commander at 

Rio, 146 
Tereni, A. S., artist, 322 
Theatre at Elba, Napoleon's, 229 

et seq. 
Thibeaudeau, 299 
Thomson, r.n., Captain, senior 

officer at Genoa, 314 
Tiberius, 129 
Toulon, 77, 95, 259, 289 
Tours, 22 
Tower, Captain, of H.M. frigate 

Curaroa, 155 
Traditi, Mayor of Portoferraio, 104, 

120, 128, 175 
Treaty of Fontainebleau (11th April, 

1814), 43 et seq., 49, 50, 59, 137, 139, 

141, 143, 199, 217, 229, 267, 274, 


— Paris, 127 

Trinidad, 275 

Troyes, 38 

Truchsess-Waldburg, Prussian Com- 
missioner, 55, 56, 60, 62, 63, 66, 67, 
68, 70 

Tschudi, Clara, 223 
Tuileries, the, 19, 23, 51, 335 
Turin, 269 
Tuscany, 90, 93, 133, 228 

— Grand Duke of, 195, 221 

Undaunted, H.M. frigate, 70, 74, 77, 
95, 102, 103, 104, 125, 135, 139, 148 

Uranie, French frigate, 295 

Ussher, Captain Thomas, 70, 71, 72, 
74, 77, 80, 81, 82, 83, 103 et seq., 
135 et seq., 143, 263 

Ussher, barge, 143 

Valence, 57, 64, 65 
Valetta, 90 

Vantini, chamberlain, 120 

— Signorina Henrietta, 232 
Vendome, 35 

Vemet, C, 323 

— Horace, 174, 324 

Vernon, m.p., G. F., received by 

Napoleon, 251, 252, 255 
Victor Emmanuel, 90 
Vienna, 114 
Villa San Martino, Napoleon's 

country house, 165 et seq. 
Villain, 324 
Villegiatura, Pauline's coiuitry house, 

164 et seq. 
Villeneuve, Admiral, 63, 255 
Vincent, chief groom at Elba, 148, 

156, 157, 179 

— Colonel, Commander of the En- 
gineers at Elba, 49, 103, 197 

Vivian, Major, received by Napoleon, 

247, 248, 261, 263 
Volterraio, 125 
Voltz, J. M., caricature of Napoleon 

by, 324, 325 

Wagram, battle of, 115, 116, 118 
Walewska, Countess, 179 et seq., 

Walewski, Alexandre, Napoleon's 

natural son, 179, 180, 183 
Waterloo, battle of, 117, 146, 148 
Weir, Captain James, 322 
Wellington, Duke of, 259, 267, 273 
Wildman, Mr., received by Napoleon, 

Wilson, Sir Robert, 76 
Wolff, Sir Henry Driunmond, 323 

Yvan, Dr., 52, 53 

Z^hyr, French brig, 311, 312, 313 






A Collection of Rare BroadsideS;, Letters, Ballads, 
and Prints, concerning the wanderings of 
Charles II after the Battle of Worcester (Sep- 
tember 3 — October 15, l651), with a Preface, 
Historical Inti'oduction, Appendix, and Biblio- 
graphy by A. M. Broadley. Crown 4to, cloth 
gilt, fully illustrated with portraits, maps, etc., 
from rare originals. l6s. net. 

Guardian. — "A storehouse of curious matter. A 
thorough and vahiable piece of historical work which 
says almost the last word upon a subject of fascinating 


A hitherto unknown chapter in the life of 
George Crabbe, revealed by his ten years' corre- 
spondence with Elizabeth Charter, 1815-1825. 
By A. M. Broadley and Walter Jerrold. Demy 
Svo, cloth gilt, with a photogravure frontispiece 
and l6 other illustrations in half-tone. lOS. 6d. 

Claudius Clear in the British Weekly says : — " A most 
interesting and valuable book. It has a quality of 
innocence, goodness, and simplicity that is not often 
to be found. As a contribution to literary history it 
deserves high rank. The editors have done their 
work to admiration," 







In Two volumes. Demy 8vo, cloth gilt, fully 
illustrated. 24s. net the set. 

This book is the private diary of a life-long and intimate 
friend of Louis Napoleon, whose identity is here thinly 
veiled under a pseudonym. Deeply affected from the 
beginning by the personality of Louis Napoleon, the 
Baron gradually became impressed with the idea 
that his friend was a son of Napoleon I, and in his 
diary he alleges some startling evidence in favour of 
his theory. From his earliest association with Louis he 
began jotting down incidents, conversations, and reflec- 
tions as they occurred, and to these he added evidence 
from every source, letters, documents, newspaper cut- 
■ tings, which, after the death of Louis Napoleon and 
within a few years of his own, he prepared for publica- 
tion. The book therefore supplies a large quantity of 
first-hand material, for the first time in English, for 
a survey and study of the life and character of one of 
the most enigmatic figures in modern history. 






Acme Library Card Pocket 

Under Pat. " Ref. Index File."